Helping the Teacher when you can’t be in Classroom

I am one of those Moms who loves the idea of working in the classroom. I love teaching, I love kids… fun, fun, fun. BUT actually finding time to work in the classroom is a little more difficult than I thought it would be. When the kids are at school it is time to work (someone has to run the blog).

Since I know I am not alone in my quest to help while not actually being in the classroom, I’ve made a list. I asked every teacher I know what type of classroom support they need. You would be surprised how quickly and confidently the ideas flowed. They know exactly what kind of help they want!

This list is perfect for back to school and something you definitely want to pin for later.

love this list of ways to help the teacher!!! #16 is happening this year for sure


How to volunteer… without working in the classroom.

  • Take home work that needs to be prepared. Cut, sort, label, glue, staple, etc.
  • Help coordinate parent volunteers for parties, field trips and donations.
  • Put together and pass out parent information. (Remember that the school can not share this info but most parents will gladly give it to you ask nicely. ;))
  • Repair and sort damaged books, games and classroom activities.
  • Make displays for special events or announcements.
  • Connect with and support parents who want to help but need guidance.
  • Make phone calls to set up field trips and special events.
  • Make field trip permission slips.
  • Make name tags with kids pictures on them for field trips.
  • Help prepare and create a monthly calendar of class events.
  • Take charge of the Scholastic’s Book Orders.
  • Teach a weekly, biweekly or monthly class using your own skills. A musical instrument, cooking, art, foreign language, etc.
  • Make copies.
  • Run errands to help collect supplies.
  • Work at the school for one or two hours to help cover recess and lunch break periods.
  • Take charge of Box Tops for Education and Labels for Education.
  • Find out what the teacher needs for their classroom and make a wish list to hand out to other parents.
  •  Have the teacher fill out a questionnaire about their interests, favorite shops, restaurants and hobbies. Give a copy of the answers out to all of the parents before a holiday or teacher appreciation week to make gift giving easier.
  • Prepare classroom center activities like file folder games or sight word boxes.

How will you use this list? Hand it out to your class if you are a teacher? Give it to other parents? Hand it to your kids teacher and ask them to circle what they need help with?

What creative ways do you help at school? (I love the ideas that are already in the comment section!!! Make sure to add some too!)  

This post originally appeared September 19, 2012


  1. Our Kindergarten teachers had scrapbooks put together for each Kindergartener. Nothing fancy, just special assignments, such as the letter of the day/week with a drawing that the child did or a picture of the child, or a pic from a special occasion: Christmas party, lost tooth, birthday, field trip, etc. I put those together for her. It did not take up much time. Most of the pages, the kids did the artwork or writing in class. Or the teacher had pre-decorated sheets of paper. She just needed someone to glue pics on the pages and match it up and insert it in the appropriate child’s binder. It was such a nice gift for the parents at the end of the school year.

  2. Love these ideas! I can’t get into my daughters preschool classroom to help as much as I’d like to because I have two little ones at home still! Will definately ask her teachers about some of these suggestions 🙂

  3. Pingback: Holiday Air Travel, Baking Memories, Laundry & Volunteering | Bonbon Break
  4. As I start to get my classroom ready for the coming year I found your ideas very helpful. Very few parents can come into the classroom but they want to help. I’m going to make a list for Back-to-School Night with a lot of your suggestions. This is only my second year teaching and I didn’t know how to use my parent volunteers very effectively last year. This will help a lot.

  5. This list is nice, but I, as an educator, find that parental support at the high school level is deplorable. Could there be a list such as this for parents of middle and high schoolers?

    1. Let’s make one!!! I started asking all the teachers I knew what would help and that is how the list was born. Are you a parent or a teacher?

  6. Pingback: 6 Flexible School Volunteer Jobs for Working Moms | edRover Fundraising Ideas
  7. I am a teacher myself and find it very hard to have parents coöperate and volenteer more and more effectively. This is a great idea that I will pass on to collegeas here in Holland.

  8. I need someone to scan my library books in using one of the classroom organizer apps!
    They could take home a box at a time! 🙂

  9. I ask my parents to do our laundry since we don’t have a washing machine to wash our dramatic play clothes. My parents also make our play dough :]

    1. Also cutting out newspaper articles that relate to the class….pics of the kids at school, current events, school events.

  10. I vollenteer at the school library at dismissal time to help the children take out books. I also display books on subjects that the children are covering in class.

  11. Since many teachers use their own money to supplement decorations and materials for their students, a gift certificate to Mardels, Hobby Lobby, Michaels, or some other teacher store would be a lovely appreciated gesture.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *