Adoption at School: Questions from Peers, the Family Tree, and More


Expert advice and personal stories about adoption at school—from talking with the teacher about adoption to preparing your child to answer questions from classmates to adapting the family tree and other sticky assignments.

Adoption Experts answer your questions.

Ask AF: Encouraging a Cohesive Racial and Cultural Identity

Ask AF: Encouraging a Cohesive Racial and Cultural Identity

“We have always tried to make sure our internationally adopted son feels proud of his heritage. This year, when the class was writing about Thanksgiving, he asked if he could skip the assignment because people from his birth country do not celebrate Thanksgiving. I know I need to talk to him, but I’m not sure where to start.”

Explaining Adoption to Classmates and Teachers

Share Your Story: Adoption & School

We asked our readers: How did you decide whether to introduce the topic of adoption at your child's school? What actions did you take, if any, to start explaining adoption to classmates or teachers? What advice do you have for other parents about how to best interact with your child's teachers?

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diverse adopted children raising their hands in a classroom, feeling safe at school

Promoting Adoption Awareness at School

As parents, how can you help make sure that your child and all the students at her school feel included and supported? Educate teachers about the five As!

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An adoptive mother talks with her child's teacher at school about adoption

Parent-to-Parent: “Do You Talk with the Teacher About Adoption?”

Do you tell the teacher that your child was adopted at the start of a new school year? See parents' answers.

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My son's interpretation of the family tree project for kids

“How We Created My Son’s Unique Family Tree”

The family tree project can be a particularly tricky one for kids who are adopted. Here's how one family tackled the assignment.

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a girl who is being bullied at school

“My Child is Being Teased at School”

Sometimes school brings tough situations, like teasing, tricky assignments, and nosy questions. When should kids handle things on their own, and when should a parent step in?

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How should your child respond when asked adoption questions at school?

When Classmates Ask

How can you help your child answer adoption questions with confidence—and handle any queries that come your way?

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School Projects: Empowering Adoptees to Self Advocate

Stepping Back at School

As your child progresses through elementary school, she should take more responsibility for handling tricky assignments. Here's how to hand off the reins.

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Family Tree Project for Kids: Adapting for Adoptees

Exploring Family Roots at School

The family tree assignment is a perfect opportunity to answer your child's questions about adoption.

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A picky eater shares her school lunch with a friend

Packing a School Lunch Your Picky Eater Will Devour

Picky eating is common in children—and as a parent, it’s probably driving you crazy. Here, simple strategies (like using a cookie cutter!) help make sure your child gets enough to eat.

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An illustration for talking to adopted children as they become teens

Supporting Your Teen’s Developing Identity

Questions from their peers get more complicated for our teens—and their peers' questions may reflect their own worries about adoption.

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a transracially adopted teen heading into school with friends

“On Choosing, or Changing, Schools”

As I weighed diversity, academics, and other factors when choosing schools for my transracially adopted children, I perpetually second-guessed myself. But now that my kids are teens, I’m ready to trust their decisions.

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An adopted child is experiencing stress at school

Alleviating Adoptee Stress at School

Every Sunday evening, at the Gordon house, 10-year-old Kelly began complaining about something. Her pains ranged from stomachaches to sore throats. She said she felt too unwell to go to school the next day.

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How over functioning parents can step back and let kids do homework themselves.

When It Comes to Homework—Are You Doing Too Much?

Battles over homework can disrupt family life any evening of the school week. To lessen the trauma, parents frequently step in to help and occasionally step over the line. We asked Anita Pollic, a fourth grade teacher at Lebanon Christian School in Lebanon, Ohio, about this important topic.

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Mother assisting daughter with homeschooling work

The Benefits of Homeschooling

Our families are well represented among a diverse national community of homeschoolers for lots of smart reasons.

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