An inspirational and resourceful website for primary teachers.
Last updated on May 25, 2021
Open House Tips and Tricks
Open House can be so stressful! As if it’s not enough to have 20-30 first graders with you all day long, five days a week, it’s time to invite their families to join you! It can be stressful, but it doesn’t have to be…
At our school, Open House happens at the end of the year. Regardless of when your school does Open House, I’m confident these tips and tricks will help you out!
Open House Tips and Tricks
Print your students’ names on labels.
Type all your students name into a label file and print MANY pages. Chances are your class is going to be completing some fun Open House projects. It is so much easier to whip out ready-to-go labels and have the kids stick it on their work instead of than trying to figure out where they should write their name. It also helps all the boards look uniform.
No parent wants to spend 20 minutes searching for their child’s work. Make it easy, make it neat. 😉
Clean as a class.
Don’t take it upon yourself to clean the entire room by yourself. Take the last few minutes of each day the week leading up to Open House and ORGANIZE. My students organized their own desks, organized the library shelves, cleaned the tops of their desks (with water only, no chemicals), and used magnets to pick leftover staples off the floor. If you think about it, you’re teaching the kids life skills!
The last thing you should do is put out fresh name tags.
Are you giving the students new name tags for Open House? I usually put out brand new name tags so their desks look “fresh.” It’s one of the last things I do after school on Open House day.
As much as we as teachers stress about Open House, it’s really about the kids!
Have your students “invite” their families to Open House!
Need an invitation template? Click here for a free one!
Let them take ownership by inviting their parents and letting them give the class tour. We practice the “tour” quite a few times the week of Open House. We all line up outside, practice signing in, and my students give their partners a “tour” for practice. And we use these tour guides so we don’t forget a thing!
One year this happened on accident, but my students loved it so much that I’m committed to doing it every year. I tell my students that they are in charge of signing in (before entering). It makes them feel so official!
Make it personal.
This year instead of having a giant home/school project on student desks, I decided to just leave their interactive notebook and then write each student a personal letter. I bragged about every positive trait they had and told them how proud I was of them. I had them read it to their parents at the end of the tour. You should have seen their faces. They were beaming! They might not remember all the fancy projects we did, but they always remember how they felt when they read that letter to mom and dad.
I also included some goodie bags. As you probably noticed, we had an ocean themed Open House, so I gave them some goldfish.
Last but not least, students personally thanked their parents (and some thanked grandparents) for coming to Open House. They wrote messages on these fish and I taped them to the back (exit) door.
Do you have any Open House tips and tricks that help make it a successful night for you?
About the Author
I help elementary teachers streamline their phonics and reading instruction by giving them all of the information and resources they need to maximize every reading lesson and raise their students reading levels once and for all.
You May Also Enjoy These
FREE Phonics Sentences Bundle
This is no ordinary bundle! When you sign up, you’ll get:
Ready-to-use pages for 100+ skills so you have exactly what you need for every phonics lesson without wasting precious time prepping materials!
3 phonics lesson tips to ensure your students master phonics skills the first time they’re taught!
My secret to raising reading levels without spending all day teaching reading groups!