Look at the title of this post again. I bet you don’t hear that question often. Most people assume that gifted children do so well in school that there’s really no reason to even ask. While it’s true that academics pose little trouble for those kids identified as “gifted,” that doesn’t mean that school as a whole is a breeze for them.
Learning can be difficult for all children at times, but when a child has a learning disability or other special need that inhibits him from comprehending new concepts as readily as his peers, school can prove to be a real challenge.
Have you ever been caught off guard by problems at school? You’re not alone. Even the most well-meaning among us can make the mistake of thinking things are fine in school when in reality, there’s trouble brewing. Later, we ask ourselves how we could have been so blind. If you’re determined to stay on top of things this school year, consider these four important reminders for evaluating your child’s success in school.
When my oldest child Kelsey was a toddler, she was a stickler for schedules. If we did something spontaneous or outside of our regular routine, she would tell me that things felt “topsy turvy.” I’m guessing that this is how some students and teachers are feeling about the latest trend to hit the education realm—the flipped classroom.
As a mom of four, I know one thing for certain—no two children are the same (or even similar) despite their genetic codes. I’m sure many of you can relate. I wish I had a nickel for every time I heard a parent sigh in exasperation at her second or third child’s behavior or mannerisms, shaking her head and saying, “Boy, I wasn’t prepared for this.” Well, just as children behave differently, they also learn differently too!
We have a school-year tradition at our house. Every night at the dinner table, we go around the table and have each child tell about the best and worst parts of their day. Occasionally, someone will have had a particularly bad day and won’t want to discuss it, and of course, we don’t push it, but most of the time, we get the usual complaints—bad food in the cafeteria, an anxiety-producing class presentation, or an overly strict teacher. Most of the time, it makes for good dinner conversation, and we all end up laughing it off. Every now and then, though, I’ll hear something that raises my eyebrows in curiosity or makes me grimace with concern.
If you’ve been keeping up with this blog, you know that my little girl started Kindergarten last week. It has been quite an adventure for the whole family. Based on my experiences so far (and yes—I know they are limited), I thought I’d offer some tips and insight for those of you who have preschoolers.
My three oldest children started the new school year last week. My daughter started high school, my son began his first year in middle school, and my younger daughter started Kindergarten. As I shooed everyone out the door that first morning praying their day would be a good one, I took a moment to take in the stillness of the house and the quiet the new school year had already beckoned into my home. I thought of all the work I’d get done while they were gone and the nap I might steal before the last bell rang. I realized that like myself, parents all over the county were secretly celebrating these little gifts that the fall had afforded them. While there’s certainly nothing wrong with counting your blessings, it occurred to me how easy it would be to simply wave goodbye to my children in the mornings and let the teachers take care of the rest. That’s what school’s for, right? Wrong! Although school is indeed back in session, our job as parents and co-educators has just begun. If you don’t believe me, just wait until your middle-schooler brings home a mountain of homework.
Does your child dislike school? Do his grades leave something to be desired? As you and your youngster are preparing for back-to-school, it’s important to keep in mind the early warning signs that a problem may be on the horizon. Returning to school in the fall makes for a busy time of year for kids and parents alike, but don’t wait until parent-teacher conference time to inquire about your child’s academic progress. Unfortunately, many parents wait until it’s clear that their child is struggling before they take steps to correct the problem. By this time, the damage may already be done. To keep your child from slipping through the cracks, take a proactive approach by looking for these five signs that the new school year is posing problems for your child.
As the big day approaches, I’m feeling more and more nervous about my little one going to Kindergarten in the fall. I must be doing a fairly good job of hiding it though, because unlike me, Miss Katie is counting down the days. She can’t wait to meet her teacher, make new friends, and “play with the toys!” In my heart, I know she’ll be fine, but my head keeps reminding me of all the things that could go wrong.
You’ve probably been there too—we all want our kids to thrive, no matter where they are in life. Whether your little one is entering Kindergarten this year or next, knowing what will be expected of her, and also knowing what you can expect as a parent can help ease your fears.