This post is sponsored by Kleenex Facial Tissue. As always, opinions remain 100% my own.
This back to school season, Kleenex® Facial Tissue wants to help you be a Classroom Hero. Learn 15+ ways you can go the extra mile to support your child’s teacher with parent volunteering… whether by sharing your time, resources or talents.
No one is worthy of your support more than your child’s teacher. That goes without saying – but have you ever wondered just how you can best support them? Parent volunteering can take many shapes and forms and doesn’t always have to mean you’re present in the classroom during the school day. There are so many different ways you can support your child’s teacher and school. And as the daughter of a retired school teacher, I assure you, all of these parent volunteering efforts are more than appreciated.
15+ Ways to be a Classroom Hero by Parent Volunteering
Just like all of our children are unique, so are we as parents. We have different talents, educational backgrounds, career experiences, financial resources and time constraints. When it comes time to volunteer at school, look to be a parent volunteer based on your individual strengths, instead of focusing on your limitations. Don’t be overwhelmed or spread yourself too thin by doing too much – pick select opportunities that are the best fit for you to make the most meaningful impact.
Volunteering Your Time
Spending time in your child’s school is what most parents immediately think of when it comes to parent volunteering. But keep in mind, giving your time doesn’t always have to mean time during the school day. If you work or have younger children that prevent you from being on campus during the day, there are still ways you can give your time when it best fits your schedule.
- Room parent: Room parent duties often include organizing and executing special classroom events and celebrations, as well as coordinating with other parents for teacher gifts.
- Field trip chaperone: Chaperoning is a great way to be a parent volunteer if your day time is otherwise limited. The trip schedule is known well in advance for you to take a day to spend with your child’s class.
- Mystery reader: Take a lunch hour to come and read to your child’s class! Nothing makes them more excited about literacy than hearing fresh voices and stories in the classroom.
- Library, lunch or recess volunteer: While on the surface it may seem that teachers work short days, when the students go home, teachers get to work planning and prepping for the next day. Volunteer to relieve them of library, lunch or recess duty to allow them to tackle those duties during the school day.
- Take home special projects: Lots of time goes into preparing materials for class projects. If you can’t come in during the school day, offer to take materials home your teacher needs prepped. Whether it’s cutting out templates or assembling folders, this is another easy way to give your time.
- Work at special events: Many special school events take place outside of regular school hours, including at night and on weekends. Consider being a parent volunteer for a few hours at one of these special events.
Volunteering Your Resources
It’s no secret our teachers are underpaid. And despite their limited incomes, they always sacrifice their salaries to invest in their classrooms and support our kids. If you have limited time, an easy way to support your child’s teacher as a parent is to volunteer those resources – and there are limitless ways to do it.
- Provide Essential Supplies: While your child’s supply list may ask for classroom supplies for their personal use, it may often include essential supplies to support the broader classroom, like Kleenex® Facial Tissues. Kleenex Facial Tissue at Costco makes it easy to give more – with 10 boxes per bundle – donate them all to your child’s classroom. I promise they will all get used. And as an added bonus, each bundle includes 15 Box Tops to raise even more funds for your school!
FREE Printable: Teacher Back to School Card for Kleenex Facial Tissue
- Sponsor Another Student: If you can afford to, consider buying a second set of school supplies to support another student at your school. In every classroom, there are students who can’t afford their own supplies, and countless teachers purchase those supplies out of their own pockets.
- Support School Fundraisers: As school budgets continue to tighten nationwide, PTO/PTA fundraising works hard to make up the difference in our children’s educational experience. If you have the financial resources to do so, always write the check, buy the books, order the cookies and pies, or make an outright donation. All of the proceeds go back into your child’s school and classroom.
- Add to the Class Library: There was no bigger investment in my mom’s classroom than in her classroom library. Well-loved classroom books are always in need of replacement, and new books are always welcome. A follower on Instagram recently shared this great idea with me – on her child’s birthday, she sends her to school with books to gift to her classroom library in lieu of cupcakes or trinkets for the class.
Volunteering Your Talents
Own a business? Stepping away for the day for parent volunteering may not be as valuable a use of your talents as donating your goods or services to the school for fundraising or teacher gifts. Are you a super ‘Type A’ organizer? Maybe you can’t volunteer in the classroom because you have other small children, but you can certainly assist the school in organizing volunteers, donations and more. Consider your individual gifts and talents and leverage those to be a classroom hero.
- Donate Your Services or Goods: If you own a local business, when the PTO/A comes knocking, give your support. It’s an easy way to support your school, at little cash cost to you, while also promoting your business in the local community. As an example. my friend’s family owns a local bakery. Every Thanksgiving and Easter, they support a bake sale at our preschool, donating 50% of sales back to the school.
- Be the Class Photographer: You know how mom is never in the photo? Neither is the teacher. If you enjoy being the family photographer, volunteer to take photographs at school events and share them with the class.
- Help Organize: Are you skilled with a spreadsheet? Offer to organize classroom volunteer needs, class collections, or a supply drive based off teacher requests. Shared spreadsheets and sign-up apps make it easier than ever, and it takes one time-consuming task off your child’s teacher’s plate.
- Take Charge: Are you a party planner extraordinaire? Or a former executive? Head up the school’s biggest event or sign up to be PTO President. As a former hedge fund analyst and fundraiser, I’ve run fundraising at my kids’ schools for the last five years.
- Share your Career: How did you know what you wanted to be when you grew up? Unless children are exposed to a wide variety of career opportunities, how can they know what might exist for them? A child’s career opportunity exposure is often limited to parents and teachers. Share your career experience in the classroom to broaden their opportunity set.
- Share your Cultural Traditions: Similarly, increase kids’ exposure to diversity by sharing your family’s unique cultural traditions in the classroom. This can be talking about different holidays, styles of dress or appearance, special dishes, decor and more.
Ready to be a classroom hero this year? If you’ve ever thought parent volunteering didn’t fit into your schedule, or that you had nothing to volunteer, hopefully this list gives you some new ideas to support your child’s teacher in a way that makes the most of your abilities. How do you participate in parent volunteering at your child’s school?
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Kleenex Facial Tissue.