My husband has a more flexible schedule than I do, so I often send him to school when the teacher needs help. Since there are usually more mothers in the classroom, the teacher and the kids think it's a special treat to have a dad be their helper for the day. -- Susan B.; Canton, Massachusetts
Go to summer orientation! Not only did it help my kids feel comfortable on the first day, it also gave me the chance to form a relationship with the teacher outside of class. -- Annie L.; Allendale, New Jersey
Whenever my kids get really excited about something they did at school, I make a point to thank their teachers. They like the feedback, and a little praise goes a long way. -- Karla D.; Monroe, North Carolina
Find special ways to pitch in. For instance, I'm not great at cooking for a bake sale, but I do know music. I made a CD for the school's haunted-house party, and the teacher loved it. -- Candice M.; Oakland, New Jersey
Originally published in the September 2008 issue of Parents magazine.