How much would you pressure/encourage your child? - Page 2 - Mothering Forums

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#31 of 33 Old 08-26-2009, 03:23 PM
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Originally Posted by ollyoxenfree View Post
Uh - I guess I just don't see that happiness and academic success need to be mutually exclusive. My kids have been pretty happy when they triumph over a challenge and achieve success - whether it's academic or in other pursuits. And we don't measure success by grades - I don't care so much about getting A's (although it's nice), rather it's whether they are understanding the material and integrating it into their knowledge base.

I don't think it's clear that the English class is too much for her. It may be too much for her if she uses her ingrained no-effort work habits. It sounds like this is the first time that she is truly being academically challenged. I wouldn't be surprised if the 4 hours of homework occur because she hasn't learned efficient work habits, how to focus on what is important in the assigned readings, etc. I think a little more investigation would help sort out the issues. Dropping the class seems premature.
Totally agreed.

To the OP, you say that the main problem is homework- she never has had to do homework, to study or put forth effort in her life. Well this is a serious problem that needs to be fixed! And it's your job to help her learn what good, effective study skills are and be supportive. Help her with the challenge, don't swoop in and remove her from the challenge. Be a pillar for her to lean on, don't enable her fears. Know now that she's going to struggle, feel pain, probably cry and be dramatic. And she will so appreciate it if you would hug her when she's crying and help her put limits on the drama. This IS a huge transition for her, so she needs her mom's support and encouragement.

Geeks and nerds in the Honors classes? So?? Define nerd. Tell her to open her mind and maybe she'll find that some of her new classmates are worthwhile people.

Seriously, this is a fantastic opportunity for her. This IS preparation for college. If you keep up a positive attitude and broadcast the impression that you think she can handle it, then she's much more likely to believe that herself.


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#32 of 33 Old 08-28-2009, 04:25 PM
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I agree with the numerous posters who have encouraged you to help her develop her study habits. It's still very early in the school year and her work may take far less than 4 hours a night after she masters some study skills. I think that it's wonderful that she's being challenged and has the opportunity to develop skills well before she hits her junior and senior years or college (speaking as one who cruised through till college and then had to learn how to study).

I also think that it's incredibly valuable for her to develop relationships with the "geeks" and "nerds" in her accelerated courses. Sounds like they've all just met since the school year must have just begun. It's very important to have peers who have high expectations, serious creative and intellectual interests, passion for learning, and solid/evolving study skills. They may not end up being best buddies---but it's important for bright children to know how to relate with bright peers. Otherwise she may feel uncomfortable with them later on.

I've also been astounded by the differences in content between the "accelerated" and "regular" high school courses in our district. The accelerated courses are far more rigorous and really give kids a foundation that those in the "regular" courses just do not receive. I have a now 18-year-old DSD who at one point tried to transition from regular math, where she was getting easy As, to accelerated math. She was completely unable to handle the work and had to remain in regular math. The gap between the two academic tracks seems to widen very quickly here. Very ironic for a district that prides itself on not tracking....if they choose it themselves it's not tracking????
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#33 of 33 Old 09-04-2009, 07:19 PM
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I was a gifted kid who fell flat on my face in High School. I moved and went from an easy easy HS to a really academic one. From a 3.8 gpa to 1.6. .01 point away from academic suspension.

It was a complete lack of study skills. I had never been challenged. I busted my ass and got my grades back up.

It was hard. It was painful, but it was something that really gave me a good skill set for college and the rest of my life. I took junior level college courses at 16 and would not have been able to do so if I had dropped out of the gifted classes--I needed those study skills.

There's hard and there's the kind of hard that requires work. Is your child shirking the work or is she really in over her head? Not everything in life will come so easily. It's good to learn how to slog through things. The rewards of doing so will be obvious to her once she's on the other side.

I also think this could be one of those things where she might eventually appreciate your pushing her and she may regret it if you do not. Although, my parents never pushed me, I pushed myself.

ETA: 4 hours of homework is alot, I rarely did that much in HS. So I would maybe look to see how efficient your child is at studying. She's on a learning curve right now and should get more efficient with time and experience.

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