Overview: Preparing for Collaboration

Print-friendly version of directions [pdf]

Estimated time: 20 minutes

Audience: parents & families, educators, administrators


To build awareness among participants that collaboration is a process that guides the way people work together to perform tasks and solve problems. Recent research suggests that student achievement is positively impacted when teachers work collaboratively. Further, teachers express greater satisfaction with their work and are more likely to continue teaching in collaborative environments. (McCLure, C.T., 2008).  


This activity has two parts:  Part 1 is a short article. Part 2 is a relationship activity that uses two articles: “What Parents Want to School Staff to Know” and “Seven Things Teachers Wish Parents Knew” to provide an opportunity for creating mutual respect and relationship building.

Link to RtI Concepts and/or Research-based practices

Epstein’s Six Types of Family-School-Community Partnerships:  Learning at Home, Communicating, Decision Making,
Wisconsin RtI Framework essential element: Collaboration


  1. Look over “What is Collaboration?”
    For Reflection: Can teachers and students have true collaborative relationships? 
  2. Relationship Activity: This activity will help connect to the former video. The readings offer two perspectives, the teacher and the parent, and encourage you to consider other perspectives. Complete any of the following activities:
    1. Read the two lists: “What Parents Want School Staff to Know” and “Seven Things Teachers Wished Parents Knew.” Are there any surprises on the lists?
    2. Compare and contrast the two lists. What is each group (parents and teachers) communicating, and what are some possible misunderstandings? For additional information you could look at the “Critical Elements of Collaboration” PowerPoint listed below as an additional resource. Write comments in your journal.


Going Deeper

Additional Activities

Additional Resources

Critical Elements of Collaboration PowerPoint and Spanish Version: Elementos Críticos De Colaboración


Group Activity

Estimated time: 30 minutes

Activity Directions for Groups [pdf]

Additional Resources for Groups:

  • None