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Contextual Learning Portal


Family Engagement


List of Projects Highlighting Family Engagement


Contextual Learning Projects provide an opportunity to create family connections and increase family engagement in classroom and out-of-school programs. The Contextual Learning Portal added a question about family engagement to the project template in 2013 and since then, have been gathering examples of family engagement. Students invite parents, guardians and other family members to project exhibitions. Students interview family members for projects involving local history, family trees, career exploration, family recipes, cultural background and other areas of family knowledge. Family members volunteer as chaperones, project mentors and reading partners. Projects about health, nutrition and exercise draw family members into an exploration of healthy lifestyles. "Family Nights" on themes of the arts, math, science and more bring students and families together to try out new projects and get ideas that they might explore more together at home.

Resources:
Family & Community Connections - From the Guide to Contextual Learning

Here are examples from projects:


Drury High School STEPS Program
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Family connection via regular phone contact from Lead Teacher. Families were recruited to help maintain the community garden. A parent visited the class to provide context about early childhood education for the students designing K-1 lessons. All families were invited to attend the celebration.
Inventor`s Club
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?For students creating a commercial, they might want to include family members as past of their cast or marketing materials.
Life Time Fitness
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?At the end of the 8-week session, students received certificates of achievement at our Family Night event. Students were encouraged to create their next Wellness Goal to include a family member or friend. The After School Program offered a Family Fitness event, in which students in the Life Time Fit[...]
Teacher Appreciation Club
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Family members were invited to the assemblies. In the last two weeks of this activity, students were encouraged to show their appreciation to other people in their lives and many of them chose family members. Students participated in a card-making activity so they could create thank-you cards for th[...]
Construction careers
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Any student that had any relative in the construction field was asked to speak to them about the nature of their job, working conditions and salary.
Tick, tick, tick
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?There are many online resources in regard to tick awareness. We printed and discussed these items with our students for them to take home and share with their families.
Future Quest Island - Networking and Mentoring - Mentors from the Past
Mentors from the Past (interview family adult)Students interview a parent or other adult about their career. done by a grandparent, great-grandparent, or other relative or friend of the family.Students can interview someone using a mobile device to record the interview rather than filling out the form.
Future Quest Island - Networking and Mentoring - Mentors from the Past
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?In this activity, students talk to a parent/guardian or other family adults about a family member or friend who had an interesting career in the past.
Future Quest Island - Future Forecasting Activity
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Discussions of careers and future with family members. Sharing of materials with family members. Take home questions for students to use with family member (favorite subjects, best jobs in 20 years, most interesting jobs, etc.). Video interviews with family members.
Future Quest Island - Future Forecasting Activity
Interviewing Students and Family MembersStudents interview family members about his/her careers and the path they took since childhood to get where they are today.
Introduction to College and Career Awareness
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Families were invited to the end of the program celebration to view student accomplishments.
S.T.E.P.S. (Summer Transitional Education Program for Success) A STEM/Service Learning Program
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Family members were invited to attend the STEPS Celebration which took place on the last day of class. This celebration is meant to honor and award students for their hard work and achievement. Parent outreach is a crucial element of the program in order to motivate students to attend school, enga[...]
Pizza Club
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Chaperons on field trips, attending the grand opening of the pizza shop.
Reuse, Recycle, Respect
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Students made pamphlet to bring home to their families
Going Beyond your Culture
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?The students were told to talk to their families about background information about their cultures
Fitness and Movement Concepts using Technology
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Yes, the skills they learned can be applied outside the school day with family and friends. All they simply need is a compass.
College and Career Exploration
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Parents/guardians were invited to a Service Fair and celebration where they were able to see work completed by students and their projects within the community.
Synesthesia
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Students brought the synesthesia survey home, to share with their families.
Popping Math Fun!
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?This could also be done when the parents come for the end of the year Open House. The students can show their parents what they learned and exhibit leadership skills.
Eat Safe
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Students kept an `Eat Safe` checklist, for home use.
Music and Drumming Exploration
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?At the end of day we have all of the activity groups share during parent pick up time. This is where parents can ask questions and see the growth in their child. We also offer a family drumming day.
Crime Scene Investigation
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?At the end of each day all enrichment activities come together for sharing time. Each enrichment activity shares what they have been working on. Parents and families are invited to sharing time.
IS183`s Fluidity: An Arts Focused Service Learning Program
Art Show and Family Presentation.Students curate and prepare a show of their work. Parents, friends, faculty, staff, and community members are invited.
Identity: Sense of Self/Sense of Place
Sense of Family (1-3 days)Interviewing Family Members; creating a family tree; "How many generations ago did your family come to North Adams?"
Future Quest Island - Soft Skills Scenarios - Social Sanctuary
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Asking for permission, public safety
The Student Design Institute
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?For our Pilot, we reached out to parents of every student in the class to discuss how students will be involved in the class. We also did a mid-pilot check-in, reiterating our instructional goals and outcomes and encouraging families to discuss the concepts being used in the class at home. We are[...]
Hip Hop Nation: US History (PROJECT DESCRIPTION)
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Students invited their families to attend Symposium night. We are having portfolio reviews at the end of this trimester and students will be able to share the projects and assignments they are most proud of from our class with their families and educational advocates.
Rethinking Legos: Robotics Space Challenge
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Parents/guardians have an opportunity to participate in these efforts by volunteering in the classrooms to act as a facilitator for student learning. Parents will be informed of these opportunities through the use of a dedicated website for the grant project.
Students as Teachers: Reaching Our Community through Public Arts Installation
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?All installations will be free, open to the public exhibits. All community members will be able to view and interact with the art work. There will also be an opportunity for family members to assist with the implementation of the installation and/or the documentation of the process.
Putt Putt
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Families are able to come participate in the playing of the mini-golf course. Many parents will have the opportunity to sponsor a hole.
Robotics and the 4Cs: Critical Thinking, Communication, Collaboration, Creativity
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Family members will be invited to be assistant coaches to the students as they design and refine their robots and participate in the National Robotics League challenges.
Interactive Ecosystems
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?While the project is completed during the school day, families are welcome to attend a project showcase where students give families and community members opportunities to interact with their finished ecosystems web and Scratch project.
Projectile Physics
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?When students present and defend their research to their classmates and various community partners, parents and family members will be invited as well.
Lift Every Voice
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Students‘ families were invited to view and respond to the films and writing students created during our school‘s annual Symposium night.
Exploring My Career with Real World Math
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?The Drury Showcase, which was an evening of academic, career and college presentations,was offered to parents and community members. A career fair, created by Academic Success students, was shared with the school population.
Discover, Design and Build
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Family members working in engineering, design, construction, and local industry will be engaged as guest speakers and mentors to illustrate to students the ways in which the processes and tools used in this class are part of business and industry standards.
Hummingbirds
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Students were given the option to bring their feeders home or place them in the school memorial garden; they were also provided with a printout of the feeder instructions to take home.
Feels Like Home
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Students engaged in conversations with family members, involving them in the inquiry and information compilation, as needed.
Future Quest Island - Career Investigation - College and Career Cove
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Discussing and completing career genogram
Future Quest Island - My Strengths - About Me Mountain
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Interviewing family to ask what they think are student‘s strengths
Future Quest Island - Networking and Mentoring - Mentoring for the Future
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?This is part of a series of activities on networking and mentoring, as part of the development of social/emotional skills and lifelong career navigation skills.
Future Quest Island - Networking and Mentoring - Mentoring for the Future
Step 1: interview family adult or online research (Classroom Activity)Students work with a parent or other adult or use online research to write a list of technologies and innovations new in the past few decades.See activity sheet or attached worksheet
Future Quest Island - High School Choice Lesson - College and Career Cove
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Parent may want their student to go to a certain school
Keep Calm & Carry On- Stress Relief
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Students were encouraged to teach their stress management techniques to their family members and a Family Yoga class were provided at the end of the session for ASPIRE families.
Murals for Morale
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?No.
Kids With Books
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?Yes, the students went home and spoke to their family and friends about donating gently used books. Also spoke to family members who have students at the elementary level.
"His-Story / Her-Story"
Family: Any opportunities to involve parent/guardians and other family members in this project?The timing of the first trimester of the course allowed for those students to share their final assessments in a portfolio review with their families and educational advocates. The Advanced Literature "herstory" piece, explored through Project Month, culminated in a presentation (a Mash up perf[...]