Wednesday, March 3, 2010

A call from the Social Studies Teacher.

The Connecticut Mastery Test started this week and in preparation my daughter brought up the option of taking additional supplements to help her focus better. She has only been taking them once in the morning, a change from when she first started 2 years ago. Then I was giving her the supplements three times a day, but as time went on better chemistry prevailed and she was obviously fine with less.

However, today I also received a call from her Social Studies teacher to inform me on all of the work NOT getting handed in. Boy, does she hate getting caught in avoidance tactics. I've seen it all before with her brother 15 years earlier, and she is following in his footsteps stride for stride. In an attempt to get them into good homework habits the guidance department put them in homework hall. That just gave them another place to explain away the homework. You see the more places it could be the longer you can redirect the people looking for it and the more time you can buy yourself before the truth comes crashing in. In the old days the truth usually came at report card time, today it's a little quicker.

So today when see comes home I'll have to confront her and be met with a barrage of defensive excuses, that usually escalates into crying, screaming and hours of time out in her room. And to top it off the homework doesn't get done and even if it did it, hardly ever makes it to the classroom and on the teachers desk. Explanations of the law of averages never helped either.

I know that when it's important to them to hand in work, when they can see the benefits in a pay check of something they value, it gets done. I trusted that idea when my son was going through it, but today I know it to be true. She passes tests-fails subjects. She knows the material and doesn't take the time to focus in on the mundane, redundant exercise of homework.

Homework is a tedious effort for the ADD personality. First you have to write it down correctly, remember to bring home all necessary tools, do it neatly, put it somewhere you'll be able to find it in a rush of commotion, take it out and hand it in during the mind numbing confusion of a normal day at middle school. So much effort to prove to the teacher you know something you already know you know and was probably board learning in the first time.

I still have control in middle school. Much to their dismay, the administration cannot hold a child back for failed subjects without the parents approval. That right is preserved for high school. My two sons dropped out of high school, passed the GED exam and continued onto college.

My daughter is showing signs of improved judgement and with time and guidance I hope she sees that offers come easier with more compliance to the rules and realize resistance always causes pain on some level.

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