At seven pm on September 22 the doors of West Bloomfield High School (WBHS) opened, but this time not for students. Parents and guardians were given a copy of their student’s schedule with the intent that they would act out their student’s day. Confused parents and guardians moved from class to class while peer mentors assisted them, giving directions to their designated areas. Teachers had an allotted time to explain what their expectations are for the class, how and what they grade, and what a student’s experience will be like throughout the year. This experience is known as Open House.
For parents and guardians, Open House is a way to see into their child’s school life. They receive information on how classes are run and what school is like compared to their experience as children. Parents and guardians like Miss Comps appreciate the experience that Open House gives them. “I’m getting to know the teachers and I’m getting a sense of going from class to class,” Judy Herman said. “I’m seeing how amazing and inspiring the teachers are.” Open House does provide the opportunity to live out their children’s day, but it also gives parents and guardians a chance to become familiar with the teacher. When Cindy Chen was asked what she gained from Open House, she replied by saying, “I like seeing and meeting the teachers, getting a feel for their style and format.”
In addition to talking to parents and guardians, teachers expressed their ideas about the event. A large part of Open House for teachers is actually preparing what they will talk about. WBHSl teacher Traci Lansaw said, “I put my syllabus together so my grading procedures and all of the curriculum that is going to be taught throughout the year is together, and try to think about me being a parent and what I would want to hear.” When asked about her stance on Open House, WBHS teacher Heather Crewes excitedly replied, “When I go to my kids open house I love it! I love that they have great learning opportunities. I love meeting their teachers. So, I love Open House because I like to make the connection to parents and I think that it gives parents a really good idea of what the typical day looks like and just the reminders, the things that kids forget to tell their parents. Just like saying you can sign up for remind 101 or there’s a website that goes with our class. Sometimes kids forget to tell parents and I think that at the end of the day parents just want to be involved with kids and help them.”
Anyone who attended this beneficial event would know about the loud music that was played throughout the halls, so when Spectrum asked WBHS teacher Dr. Jill Adamczyk how high school has changed, she jokingly responded with, “Our music was better.” She then went on to say, “It’s not much different to be honest.”
Whether the person attending was a parent and guardian or a teacher, it can easily be said that Open House was a helpful experience for all who were involved.