If you could meet the needs of Grade One parents at the push of a photocopying button, wouldn't you?

Announcing The Primary Thing
The Communication Solution for Busy Teachers

" This Special Newsletter
Answers Parents' Most Frequently Asked Questions
So You Can Focus On Teaching "

When Parents Need Answers,
The Primary Thing
Speaks For You...

The Primary  Thing, newsletter for Grade One parents

Current Research
In Parent-Friendly Language

"Teachers and parents at my school love The Primary Thing. Its information is timely, relevant, and written in parent language. It truly supports the teacher and parent of a grade one student throughout the whole year."

--John Speakman B.Ed. M.Sc. principal

This information is the result of almost thirty years of experience and intensive research into the answers to parents' questions.

Dear Educator,

I know how it feels to have parents with questions
and little time to fully meet their needs.

Until six years ago I was wearing myself out trying to do it all.

Then I decided to be proactive and write out the answers to the most common questions and distribute them as a regular newsletter to my parents.

Now my newsletter helps other teachers to help their parents with those very real concerns that go along with having a child in Grade One!

When I showed my colleagues what I was sending home, they asked for copies.

Based on their enthusiasm and encouragement, I decided to share these letters with anyone who wants to help parents make their child's school life a success.

"The Primary Thing gave us guidance and helpful ideas to use with our older daughter as well as our Grade One child. I appreciate its clarity and the reassurance it has provided in helping us to know when we're on the right track."

--Liz Wood (Appreciative parent)
the Pritchards appreciate The Primary Thing

But before I get into the details, please let me briefly introduce myself.

My name is Audrey Owen. I've been a Grade One teacher at heart and by experience from the beginning. As a pre-service teacher I fought the system to be allowed to do all my practical training in Grade One because I knew instinctively that Grade One students were those I most wanted to teach.

As I taught, I did what all good teachers do. . . I became an informal researcher. I've shared my knowledge with my school and district colleagues and have collaborated with them in writing material for parents and teachers.

I made the research more formal when I completed my Master of Education degree at Simon Fraser University. I realized that my intuition that Grade One children are truly special had been right.

My experience and research supported each other and gave me more confidence in what I had to share.

So just how will you benefit from my experience and research?

You Know Communication Prevents Problems

You want to communicate with parents. I will give you a great tool for doing that.

You know that both you and the parents you deal with are too busy to schedule the meeting time it would take to answer all their questions.

You simply do not have the time to do it all.
You need a colleague in your corner.
You need a fellow teacher who shares. . .

  • your love of children
  • your zest for learning
  • your knowledge of pedagogy and the institutional life of school
  • your professional attitude

Better if this colleague. . .

  • is an experienced specialist in Grade One children
  • has a master of education degree
  • is a published writer
  • is willing to share her time and resources with you.
“The Primary Thing gets right to the heart of what parents need to know.
I wish I’d had it years ago.”

--Jean Klan (teacher with over 30 years experience.)

The Good News Is. . .
"I save you time while I reflect who you are!"

Yes, in just minutes twice each month, you can distribute The Primary Thing to the families in your class.

Briefly,The Primary Thing comes to your email box 18 times during the school year. You make as many copies as you need to distribute it to all Grade One families in your school.

That's right, one subscription covers ALL Grade One parents in a school!

The Multiple Benefits Of Distributing The Primary Thing...

The upsides of distributing The Primary Thing are numerous and compelling:

You will have parents on your side.. Informed parents are supportive parents.

You show your heart of care. When you answer questions before they are asked, you demonstrate your understanding and concern.

You deal with issues proactively instead of waiting to be blind-sided. The hidden questions are the bombs waiting to go off.

You build solid relationships. When the stresses come, you can count on the understanding you've built with the parents.

You show your professionalism. When parents see the breadth of your knowledge, their respect grows.

You give yourself the gift of time. All the preparation is done for you. All you do is copy and distribute the newsletter.

You take charge of difficult situations. When you address hard issues head-on, you open the door to discussion.

You have back-up. The Primary Thing carefully builds the image of the classroom teacher as the expert on educational issues.

You can do this on autopilot. Issues arrive regularly as e-mail attachments. No need for you to remember that it's time to write a newsletter.

As I write this, other teachers are strengthening their relationships with the parents in their schools with almost no effort on their part.

"I'm so impressed with this newsletter! I like the way The Primary Thing explains things so that it is easily understood by the parents.

If the message is one that I think Kindergarten parents would be interested in or that they should know, I send it with my Kindergarten students as well as the Grade One students."

--Terry Dechief (Teacher)

When I started using The Primary Thing, I was impressed by how the effort I made changed things in my relationships with parents.I still have parents commenting to me on things they read in the first year of publication.

Most schools that subscribe to The Primary Thing renew their subscriptions. This speaks well for the material.

I wanted to create a tool to deal with the questions parents have year after year. I believe I've done just that.

The Primary Thing is current.

It gives a broad look at this age from different angles.”

--Autumn White (Parent)

"18 Issues That Anticipate Need"...

Each issue of The Primary Thing zeros in on one question Grade One parents ask (or one topic we wish they would ask about.)

As I write this, I'm just finishing Volume 5. The past five years have allowed me to test and refine the topics. I continue to respond to comments from educators and parents. And of course I continue to follow educational research.

Here are the 18 topics in the last volume of The Primary Thing:
  1. How can I give my child the best start to this important year?
  2. How do teachers decide what to teach?
  3. What information does the teacher want about my child and what happens to that information?
  4. What does the report card MEAN?
  5. How can I help my child become a better reader?
  6. What does normal language development look like in a six-year-old?
  7. How can I help my child give and receive gifts?
  8. How does play relate to learning?
  9. What does Grade One writing look like and don't you teach spelling?
  10. How can I help my Grade One child stay physically fit?
  11. What can I do if I don't agree with the teacher?
  12. Why is my child lying and stealing now?
  13. How can I help my child with Math?
  14. What can I do about bullying?
  15. How will the teacher decide where my child goes next year?
  16. What jobs at home will help my child develop independence and positive self-esteem?
  17. How can I help my child prepare for Grade Two?
  18. How can I help my child prepare for Grade One? This one goes to the current Kindergarten class. Imagine getting them all primed and ready for you!
(Note: You do not have to do this research yourself. You have only to subscribe once to get all these answers in easy-to-read form.)

Bottom line: Parents will love you for giving them The Primary Thing. And the more they love you, the easier it will be to teach their children.

Each issue meets the specific need of some family in the classroom.

“The Primary Thing inspired us to make changes in our family.”

--Lana LaBelle (Parent)

You'll Also Get A BONUS Booklet,
Parents As Math Partners

When you receive the issue dealing with Numeracy, you will also receive a booklet called Parents As Math Partners. It gives parents from K-3 practical tips for making Math at home fun. Our primary teachers give this booklet out each year and parents love it!

Try it! You'll like it!

Use the form below to request a complimentary issue of The Primary Thing along with an order form. I send these individually by hand, so this may take a day or two, depending on what else I have to do.

I know that in most schools, you need the permission of your principal to send out any commercial material. That's why I haven't put a buy button on this page and why you can't just order The Primary Thing right now.

Your principal will want to know what's going out of your classroom. Print out the complimentary copy, which includes an order form, and get permission before you buy. When you show the principal the copy, include the attached subscription form. You might even get your school or parent group to pay for The Primary Thing.

"Audrey - The superintendent gave me your letter and copies of The Primary Thing as a part of my newest job. I agree that it would be good to have a wider audience for these as many parents do have these questions."

-- Bev Terry (Principal, District Student Achievement)

The Primary Thing costs only $30
for a full year!
That's right. Only $30 gives your school
18 newsletters
for each Grade One family enrolled.

I have set this up so that you can, if you choose, receive a reminder a week from now so you won't forget to order after your principal has said, “Yes.” That way you don't have to worry about book marking this site to find it again.

Of course, if you don't want the reminder, you won't get it. You have to ask for the reminder by clicking on a link you'll see in the e-mail that lets you know I got your message. I just wanted to be sure you wouldn't miss out by accident.

"I continue to LOVE your newsletter for Parents! Thanks!"

-- Cheryl McLeod (White Rock, BC)

Fill in the form to get your complimentary copy of The Primary Thing. I look forward to hearing from you.

The Primary Thing

Please note that all fields followed by an asterisk must be filled in.
Please send me a complimentary copy of The Primary Thing and a subscription form.

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My best wishes to you as you work with Grade One students.

PS It's best if you can send in your subscription before September so your current parents don't miss any issues. If you have to subscribe at another time of year, we can adjust your payment, or allow your subscription to run twelve months, straddling two school years.

PPS The material in The Primary Thing is written by a Canadian, but the material applies to any English-speaking school setting. If you live outside of Canada and want to subscribe, just let me know where you are from in the comments section of the form above and I will tell you how to make a payment.