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Last edited by Clarabelle; 31-08-2012 at 11:45. Reason: privacy
I would have a look at what his "currency" is...and set up some motivation for him.
Do they do weekly class tests or have weekly marked homework? Maybe bonuses for doing well (more time with mates or a movie night or something...not cash lol).
Does he know what he wants to be yet? Maybe take him to see some workplaces ... show him the different life options?
If things get bad...you could look at the reverse (ie if you don't get a good report...you can't play X sport).
It does have to come from within them...but...we can spark those interests and make working hard worthwhile now. It's hard when you are 12/13 to see the benefits if there is no reward till the end of year 12 or even uni.
We talk a lot about privileges and rights and responsibility...this helps our kids see that they do live a privileged life and that we can take away some of those if they are not living up to their end of the deal.
i think it works, because, as adults we will reward ourselves for working hard...even simple things like a new dress or a nice dinner (takeaway after a long day etc) or a few drinks after dinner. Kids don't have this option and school is a place where they could really use this type of incentive and they don't have to ability to give it to themselves.
I think showing you are invested in their future and want to help motivate them is a good thing. I don't use money (as I don't want to "pay" them to do what they should do) but, giving them time and showing them that if they work hard they do get leisure time...then you are sort of showing them how we work as adults.
I often use rewards for good work for my DS who is homeschooled. He does work well on his own...but, knowing there are rewards for high quality work helps keep him going. Not big things...sometimes 30 minutes on the Wii or extra time at karate or a movie night or having a friend over. I reward myself with a nice coffee or 1 hour of reading my book or dinner with a gf when i have worked hard...so why not reward my kids?
Riversong, how old is your son? You mentioned he is homeschooled, is he performing above his year level? I have heard that is quite often the case with homeschooled children....
Don't get me wrong I'm not being rude or judgmental or anything. I did really well in primary school almost got skipped a grade but mum didn't want it to happen. The thing is it's primary school!!!!! I would just be happy he is coping and happy to go to school lol. The big thing is high school it's just so different to what you have experienced. I remember there were kids in grade 8 who when we sat for a teat wouldn't even open the test paper would just write their names on the front. I believe it was because changing from having to deal with one teacher all day to only seeing your teacher 40 minutes a day a couple of days a week they just thought they could get away with it which in fact they did. Also dealing with the class changes and how you go to classes with all different people in each class and even tuckshop options are way better than primary lol. I wouldn't push your boy to do better let him work it out so that he feels that every decision that was made was entirely his and if he doesn't live up to all these expectations placed on him could encourage him to be worse off than a laborer. Even if he does poorly at school which I doubt he will lol you can still go to university or still have a trade. Not everything relies so heavily on your grades and schools should stop pushing these ideas into kids heads. I remember being so worried to the point I just quit school because I was struggling with my school work and my private life 3 months before graduating. I dont regret it because since then I've got heaps of qualifications and so much experience. Good luck to ur son I'm sure he will make you proud no matter how you deal with the situation and what he decides to do with his life
yeah, he is 8 (year 2 age) doing mainly year 5/6 work at the moment, although my maths tutor thinks he is capable of much higher maths.
we are going to try and get him back into school next year (a specialist one that can challenge him intellectually) so i am trying not to let him get any further ahead so we are trying to focus on general knowledge, extended thinking and skill builders.
he is seeing an educational pysch to help with the transition...she is going to work with his school too. We are considering him skipping a year...so going in a 3/4 composite class...then moving straight to year 5 the following year. i am a bit nervous about it but it seems to make sense and we are going to decide half way through next year in conjunction with his teacher/pysch/head teacher.
oh, and i would not be happy with "coping" with high school. it is a big change, but it is now term 3 and if he slacks off now, it will effect him into the future.
helping him get motivated and into it now...will help him for the rest of his studies. if he learns that being slack is acceptable in high school..that is what he will do.
An honest review with your son and what his teacher says and what you expect and what he's feeling or thinking about is what's needed first. Esp if you start by asking how are you finding maths/work at school? If he says fine tell him about the phonecall and that you and his teacher agree that he is bright and he is capable and then say that you wonder if he is producing high quality work. Ask for his thoughts etc. Keep talking and encouraging and asking for his perspective. If you think he is "telling you what he thinks you want to hear" encourage him to be straight up and honest with you and that in doing that he will be heard.
Ultimately it is up to him to work at school....you can only encourage not control.
I agree in finding a "currency" that motivates him. I have taught quite a few year 7 classes so am familiar with the age group and there are many distractions that can keep them off task. I would be thrilled if a parent asked me for a weekly update because it means that you are being supportive and not ignoring the issue. If the positive reinforcement and currency system isn't working then you may need to look at playing hard ball. It depends on his personality - what works for some kids won't work for others. I generally find that positive reinforcement works better though with most kids. You are doing the right thing as a parent though. You wouldn't believe how many parents choose to ignore these situations and let the teacher "deal with it". You will experience a lot more success with him if you and his teacher are on the same page and working together. He will know that he can't get away with anything because you have the communication lines open with his teacher. I hope he finds some motivation soon. I just wanted to add that he might misbehave more in a lower Maths group because he is obviously intelligent and will get bored. However, I see where his teacher is coming from in teaching him that the top group is for serious learners. Maybe talk to him lots about that. Good luck!!
River Song (29-08-2012)
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