6 Conversation Prompts for Families to Make Homework Time Easier

6 Conversation Prompts for Families to Make Homework Time Easier

August 12, 2019 | For Educators

Engaging families in learning can be challenging. Check out these easy prompts you can send home with your students to involve their parents with homework!

Click here or the image below to access the PDF, which you can print out or send home digitally. Click here to access the flyer in Spanish


Conversation Prompts for Families

Interested in learning more about our family engagement resources? Get in touch!


3 Ways to Share Family Playlists Data

3 Ways to Share Your Family Playlists Data

June 5, 2019 | For Educators

Now, you can showcase your incredible Family Playlist results with our new enhanced reports! Sharing data has never been so easy.

Highly customizable reports make it easy for you to select and share from the year. Here are three ways you can use them.

1.  Share with Your School Leaders

Elevate your success stories with your principal or AP by selecting your best examples of parent feedback and student responses. Follow these simple steps to create a highlight reel in as little as five minutes!


2.  Impress Your Team

Now that you’re a family engagement expert, share the love with your team! Send your best images and parent responses in a report and let the visuals do the talking.

 3.  Boast the Best from the Year

With new-and-improved printing options for Family Playlist reports, it’s easy to highlight all the greatest smiles, explorations, and learning from the year for all who pass by. Pin highlights to your bulletin board or add to your portfolio.


Ready to get started? Check out this Support Center article for three ways to share, export, or print Family Playlist Reports.


The best experience I had is one my teachers came into my office because she was super excited about one of the comments a parent had sent to her through a Family Playlist. It was exciting to see that teacher’s response and reaction to the parent communication and the connection that was able to come to life around learning as a result of Family Playlists.
Monique Booth

Principal, Salem Church Elementary

5X Match Opportunity to Bring Family Playlists to Your School

5X Match Opportunity to Bring Family Playlists to Your School

April 19, 2019 | For Educators

It’s back! We’re excited to re-introduce our Family Engagement Innovators Program supported by a 5X MATCH on DonorsChoose.org. Start your project today to receive personalized PD, upgrade your PowerMyLearning Connect account, and secure year-long access to Family Playlists!

The Family Engagement Innovators Program is designed for teachers in grades 3-8. Here’s what the program includes:

  • Personalized PD sessions
    • Learn best practices and receive implementation support from family engagement experts.
  • Family Playlists access
    •  Engage your students’ families in learning with standards-aligned, mobile-friendly homework assignments.
  • PowerMyLearning Connect: School Edition subscription
    • Upgrade your Basic Edition account for you AND four teachers at your school. Discover advanced rostering, assignment, and reporting tools.
  • Official Certificate of Completion
    • Promote your family engagement expertise with a shareable digital certificate.

CLICK HERE to start your project today. The program is available for a limited time, so you don’t want to miss out! We look forward to bringing this unique family engagement program to your students.

Questions? Contact Bill Rappel, Director of Strategic Partnerships, at brappel@PowerMyLearning.org.


3 Steps to Launch Family Playlists

3 Steps to Launch Family Playlists 

December 5, 2018 | For Educators

Family Playlists put students in the teacher’s seat and enable them to drive rich, standards-aligned experiences at home with their families.

Ready to get started? See this checklist for three quick steps to launch Family Playlists your class.

1.  Reach out to your families and collect their contact information.

Send home this Intro Flyer to inform families about the program and gather their contact information. Family Playlists offer automatic translation to make two-way communication between teachers and families easier.

Family Playlists Intro Flyer

2.  Set up your classes.

Set up your class roster, including your students’ linked family partners, in minutes using our powerful Bulk Account Creation tool! Create student and family partner accounts one at a time or upload an Excel file with both student and family partner information. Once entered, all accounts will live in your School Directory to minimize data entry.

PowerMyLearning Connect: School Edition Class Rosters

 3.  Launch with students.

Now, you’re ready for take-off! Assign your first Family Playlist and use our launch lesson resources to kick off Family Playlists in class with your students.


Questions? Check out the PowerMyLearning Connect: School Edition Support Center, where you can find information on Family Playlists reports, resources for student conferences, and more!

Ready to get started with your first Family Playlist? Teach your students what a Family Playlist is and how they can complete it successfully using our Introduction to Family Playlists.


What’s New on PowerMyLearning Connect?

What’s New on PowerMyLearning Connect?

October 1, 2018 | For Educators

We’re excited to bring you new content, available on PowerMyLearning Connect!

New Standards-Aligned Math Playlists

The PowerMyLearning Connect Playlist library now has 160 new certified math playlists! The new CCSS-aligned playlists for grades 3-8 break down standards into smaller digestible learning objectives that students can easily understand.

Each playlist includes:

  1. Clear learning goals that are meaningful for students akin to “I can…” statements
  2. A vetted selection of high-quality learning videos, practice activities, and interactives
  3. Additional student-facing activity instructions for clarity and coherence
  4. Auto-scored self-check assessments that allow students to check their understanding and receive immediate feedback

Ready to start exploring? Simply log in to PowerMyLearning Connect, and select MathGrades 3-8Playlists.

Tech-Enhanced Assessment Items

Create more opportunities to help your students monitor their progress and reach their learning goals! “Test” out our new wave of assessment items, including technology-enhanced items (TEIs). TEIs prompt students to think critically to construct an answer versus merely selecting a response.

Now, when using PowerMyLearning Connect playlists you can:

  • Create interactive drag and drop questions that require students to sort or categorize information.
  • Power up assessment questions by including multiple choice and correct answer options
  • Preview how students see questions and what they will see after responding

Need Help? Visit the PowerMyLearning Connect Support Center, and check out step-by-step resources on topics like how to Modify or Create Questions.


4 Tools to Engage Families as Learning Partners | #ISTE18 Recap

4 Tools to Engage Families as Learning Partners | #ISTE18 Recap

July 30, 2018 | For Educators

This post is authored by PowerMyLearning Coaches (and #ISTE18 presenters!) Maria Morrisson Copolillo and Kendra Frank

We know that teachers need better resources to engage families. According to a national survey, almost all teachers (99%) believe family engagement is important to student success; however, three-quarters of educators (74%) say they need help engaging their students’ families.

This could be why our sold-out #ISTE18 session, “Engaging Families as Partners Using Digital Tools,” was such a huge hit.

In case you missed it, we wanted to share four resources from our presentation that you can use to engage families as learning partners.

1. Set Meaningful Goals Around Family Engagement

What do you want to accomplish with family engagement this year? Use this template to brainstorm your goals and action items. 

Remember that goals should be SMARTe: specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, time-bound, and account for the environment.

2. Send Home Low-Tech, Low-Cost Tools for Families

One of the resources we shared that got the biggest audience response was the super low-tech Fridge Card!

This idea came from two of the most awesome teachers Maria has ever worked with (shout-out to Ms. Barbot and Ms. Hammond!) who created them for middle schoolers when students were struggling to remember passwords and important information once they got home.

The idea is simple: print important information like teachers’ contact information and logins on a brightly-colored piece of paper. Laminate (or don’t!). Attach a few strips of magnet tape to the back. Send it home with instructions to keep on the fridge!

Click here to download our Fridge Card template. Note: download the Microsoft Word document instead of using Google Docs to get the best formatting.

3. Blast Off! Use a Weekly Newsletter

Share highlights, important class notes, and key reminders using a weekly email blast to families.

Kendra worked with a teacher who created podcasts and screencasts of the week’s most difficult lessons and included them in her weekly e-blast. This empowered families to assist their children with homework and gave students the opportunity to revisit difficult material.

Maria worked with one teacher who would take a picture of a student’s exemplar in-class notes and share them via email to all families on Monday, with an encouragement to family partners to check their student’s notebook and make sure they weren’t missing any information.

Click here to check out our sample template! We like using Google Drawings because it’s so easy to format. Note: Select “Make a copy” in the File drop-down menu to edit the template.

Once you get the hang of it, you can have your students create their own personal newsletters in Google Drawings to send home.

Pro Tip: Don’t forget to put all family member email addresses in the BCC line so that you don’t end up with a very long reply-all chain!

4. Invest in Linked-to-Learning Family Engagement Solutions like Family Playlists

We’ve learned that the most meaningful family engagement (and student mastery!) is fostered when students and family members work together on activities that are linked to what students are learning in class.

PowerMyLearning’s Family Playlists engage families in a way that’s authentic and meaningful! These interactive mobile assignments strengthen the “triangle” of student-family-teacher relationships. Using a collaborative activity, students teach what they learned in class to a family partner—this step leverages the “protégé effect,” which shows that students understand a concept better after explaining it to someone else.

And Family Playlists offer automatic translation in 10 languages, so everyone can participate!

Click here to learn more about Family Playlists and how to bring them to your school.

Please feel free to share and make resources on your own. We would love to see what you create—follow us on Twitter and show us your work @PowerMyLearning!