My daughter is 9 and in 4th grade. she is very smart and has always been a great student, but this year things have been different. 1, she is really getting into her friends. That is pretty much all that she thinks of. Well her school work is been sliding. She isn't vocusing in class cause she talks to her friends, doodles in her notebook etc. She even asks in the middle of class to leave and call me and ask me if she can go to her friends house. She was in future problem solvers and ended up dropping out cause she was more interested in her friends. I don't let her go to anybodys house after school and when she gets home she has a snack and then she works on her homework.but lately she has been lying and hidding her homework so I can't find it in her backpack. Then I will find it and make her do it and she complains and whines about it, says she can't do it. She is getting lazy and acts like she can't do it and tries to get us to give her the answers and every night there ends up being a fight. she tells herself that she is stupid. My husband and I started praising her about how smart, wonderful, special ect sinse she was a baby. I never got praised as a kid, so we made sure to praise all of our kids from the begining. And she is supposed to read a certain book each night and do a book report. And each week she has a newspaper (4 kids) and is supposed to write about it. She sits at the table whining that she can't do it, or she looses it, or says one of her sisters took it. It's always excuse.She doens't pay attention in class. to be cont...
I just don't know what to do with her anymore. Some things in her life have changed, like her dad now works nights. She see's him while they are getting ready in the morning and he gets off work at midnight, and he works weekends. She just doens't ever have any time to spend with him anymore. He got this job last June. And now,with my condition I know she is worried about me and when she see's me I'm either doped up on pain meds or in just so much pain that I can't even talk.So she isn't getting much time with me either. We sit on the couch and she reads to me or we do something simple, but these meds make me so tired that I can't stay awake long. But the school problems started a few months after school started. Now she has this friend D and we really don't like her. I won't get into why, it will take too long, but I noticed over the summer when she would play with D her attitude would change and she would just act like a brat. So we cut down the time she plays with D to like once a month, but she plays with her at school. I don't know if these problems are because of D, or a combination of everything. How do I get her to be more serious about school? Also, she has a hard time in math, she really struggles, is awesome in reading and spelling. I have a 7 year old also and she see's Johaunna's math homework and has no problem with it. She would look over Jo's shoulder and answers just like that. She is in the 2nd grade. So that makes Jo want to give up and makes her feel stupid that her younger sister can do it and she can't. By the way, we won't let Andrea near Johaunna when she is doing her homework anymore. Johaunna isn't distracted while doing homework. tv is off, no music, no eating, other siblings are in a different room. I'm so afraid that this is going to be a pattern with her and we won't be able to break it. 4th grade is when I gave up in school because I had a teacher that told me I was stupid etc. and I went down hill from there. I don't know what to do with Johaunna. Can anybody give me some idea's why she might be doing this, why she just doesn't care about school anymore, but cries when she comes home with an F because she jsut didn't try. I don't know what to do. I am so afraid for her. I'm sorry this is so long, I just wanted to paint the whole picture for you all. any advice??? I'm desperate and don't want her other sister to see this and start this. And it's not like I'm not involved. I check her backpack everyday, go through her papers with her everyday, help her everyday, talk about school, but it turns into a fight because her grades are getting worse. and I haven't been able to help her this past few weeks. We are staying with my parents house till I get better and they are helping her, but all of this started way before I got sick and moved in with my parents. Please help!!!
I don't have any childern yet, but that sounds alot like I was when I was young. I didn't like school, and I got way behind, my parents had split up a year back and my house wasn't very stable. I know that isn't what she is going through, but I think you start to notice friends more, because you get alot closer to them at that age, you get your groups of friends and just want to have fun. I am sure you remember, anyways, my dad and stepmom would just make me study for an hour everyday after school, no matter if I had anything to do or not, even if it was reading a book. There was no phone or play time before that. After that i had a few chores and then my time in which i could call my friends (but phone calls where monitiored and kept to a limit). If you ground her for not doing her homework she'll just hate it more, because it's something that gets her in trouble. Maybe try taking her to the library to study, or somewhere that she won't be distracted. Also make sure at school she isn't sitting beside her friends. I used to cheat off my friends because it made doing the stuff quicker and easier. Plus we would talk non stop which aggrivated the teacher and distracted us from paying attention. I would not do my work sometimes to spite my parents. It became a game, I would try to out smart them. They always told me that as long as I did my best then they were happy. Many times they would ask was that your best and I would lie and say yes,just to not cause a agrument, and they would drop it. Now on the other end I went to school with a girl, that would cry if she got a B, because her parents would yell at her and punish her for not getting straight A's. I appricated my parents not being like that but I think they could have tried more, to make sure I was reaching my full potential. I did go to college, and got a degree, but it was very hard, I do belive it was because I got behind at a early age, and was never really pushed to do any better then the minimum. (even though I went to college, i still can not spell. lol) I kept the same study habits from about fourth grade on, do the minimum, and that's it. In college and even high school it's very hard to change study habits, once they are set. Sounds like your doing a good job, conforonting the problem early. Just don't push her over the edge, but keep strong. It may also be boys that are distracting her also, I know that is young, but I had alot of crushes back then, and that's all you can think about. You'll find a happy medium in there somewhere. Good luck.
I think its important to support her wanting to be social in ways that are not distacting her schoolwork, of course. Especially being you are ill and Dad is not present, it seems like she could really use friends right now. You can use this as a reinforcer since she wants it so badly. Say "Suzy" can come over for an hour after dinner IF you finish your homework. How about after a respectable report card, she can have a sleepover with 2 of her friends. ETC ETC. You can definately use this to help steer her in the direction you want her regarding her schoolwork. i wouldnt want to shut her off from her friends when she can really be needing them right now.
I am an only child and really thrived off of my friendships. My mother was a single parent as I only saw my dad on Sundays AND she worked 2 jobs.
well, just read the rest of your post, sorry guess i jumped the gun. Yeah, I would say that some of it is from the stress at home there is a statics that kids that have trouble at home, maybe she feels alot of pressure since her life is changing, or she has to help out more. Anyways it's that kids that are in strong homes meaning the PREFECT American family the kids are able to consentrate more on school work, but the kids that have more resposiblity or have parents that fight or are divorced, look at survival mode, and don't do so hot in school. I am not saying that you have this, but I am just saying that with all this change and you being sick that it's hard on her. Maybe try some counceling that way she can get stuff that's bothering her off her chest, and learn that it's not her doings and that you need to her concetrate on school, not on trying to take care of you. (I am not saying that she does) but I am betting that she worries more then you think about things. Also if my little sister knew an anwser to something I didn't i would be feeling very down also. Good idea to keep her away to allow her to concentrate on things without the pressure. I also struggled in math, and still do today. I get it done, but takes along time. The caculater is my best friend, I think some kids are good at some things while others are not. As for the friend, yeah, my parents made me stop spending time with some friends, you see how they act and think if it works for them, it might work for me. Everyone parents differntly, unfortuntly kids see that and try out things on there parents that they see their buddies doing and getting away with. Kids are very easy to mold by other kids (peer pressure). You see something and if one kids says it's cool then it must be cool. Also my hubby is a teacher (high school) but he has alot of parents contact him and he works with them to make sure they know what the kids have to do every night. Like maybe her teacher can email you with homework that she has assigned, that way you know what to expect that night. Also ask for grades, some kids lie about grades to keep parents off there backs, she is young but kids are tricky, and they know what buttons to push and what ones to stay away from. I was a bad kid, but I turned out alright, I did because my parents and I went round and round and I ran off to college to get away from home. (there was lot more problems then just school) Anyways, I know her side,that's why I say support her don't punish her. Be one step ahead. Get the teacher to work with you, that's what they are there for and if they don't contact the prinipal and get them involved. I am happy that you care when she is so young, best to be shaping these things now and not battling a teenager. Like I said good luck and i hope you figure it out. Remember one step ahead of her. And she'll get tired of battling you and will just do it and will build a strong study habit. I am not critizing you, just giving you her insight. I am here to support you, if you have any questions just ask.
We home school, but my ds is now 10 and he started this kind of thing last year (resisting work, wanting to be with friends more, etc.). I'm thinking it may be more of a developmental thing--wanting to be more independent and social.
I have found something important to him--going to the skateboard park (I'm there with him when he goes)--and I will take him every day for an hour, but he has to do his work NICELY (no fussing, fighting, arguing, in a timely manner, etc.). He has had days when he has said, "I don't care if I go to the skateboard park!" while refusing to do his work and when he finally finishes his work, he doesn't go. It's not until he's lost going that he cares.
Maybe if you find an incentive for her, that will help. Maybe she can have her friend over twice a week or can email with her friend (computer time?) or get time to talk to her friend on the phone, if she does her work nicely? And maybe a bigger monthly incentive (going bowling with a friend or having a sleepover) if she brings her grades up?
I'm also wondering if she should be grounded from friends until she gets her grades back up? I don't think that would be effective with my ds--he responds better to frequent incentives and if I were to ground him for a month or indefinitely (based upon if he gets his grades up), it wouldn't work--he's more of an in-the-moment kind of kid, so daily incentives work best for him (believe me, I've tried many things).
Good luck with your dd...I know how frustrating it can be--just when you think you have it figured out, they move on to a new stage of development and you have to change your game plan.
I am a 6th, 7th, and 8th grade math teacher and first let me applaud you for CARING! I wish I had more parents like you in my school! Do understand that it is a VERY social age. I am sorry to hear that she is linking up with a girl who may not be the best influence. :( I see it all the time.
I agree with the other posters and I have seen it work...find something that matters to her and use it as an incentive. It sounds like "friend" time might be the key.
Good luck and don't give up. It is a developmental thing but with you there to show you care...she's going to turn out to be a wonderful young lady!
Thanks for all the good advice everybody. It makes me feel better knowing that we are not the only ones out there that are dealing with this and that it's a normal part of growing up. She is a good kid so I'm pretty confident that she will turn out ok as long as hubby and I do our job, aaahhhh....teen years, hormones, puberty are setting in, (sigh...:)
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