is it "cool" to say you hate school? Or does my dd really not like school??? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 11 Old 09-18-2011, 06:26 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have a third grader.  Her grades are very good, although she puts forth minimal effort.  She is so excited when an assignment says, 'Write a summary of at least  five sentences" and she ONLY does five sentences. 
In the car, the other day, she said she hated school.  I have asked her every year if she wants to be homeschooled and she says no.  She doesn't want to do any school bc it's too much work.  She wants to play dolls and watch tv all the time...seriously.  I let her watch 30 minutes most days---some days 1 hour  and she only gets 10 minutes on the computer. 

I've asked her if she has trouble with anyone at school.  No.  She loves the social aspect of school.  When I threaten her with homeschool, she gets mad bc she won't have recess. 


Her teacher gives out "stretch" homework, which is not too hard.  It maybe makes her think 10% more than usual.  THe stretch homework is optional so she never wants to do it. 

Her behavior is very good and never gets in trouble at school.

 

What should I do???

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#2 of 11 Old 09-19-2011, 08:57 AM
 
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In answer to the question you pose in the title, yes, there is a mythos that it's cool to hate school.  Read a variety of books written for kids that age, and a broad theme does tend to be that school is boring.

 

That being said, my kids have only expressed these feelings when it turns out their needs aren't being met at school.  Sometimes that's a friends thing, sometimes it's a poor fit with the teacher, and sometimes it's that the level presented at school is inappropriate to the child.

 

The first step, then, is to have a conversation with the teacher.  What she seeing about your daughter?  Does she appear engaged in the classroom?  Has she noticed if she's struggling with any peer relationships?  If this is different behavior than last year, state it as such.  Present yourself to the teacher as on the same team - you two need to work together to figure out how things are going and to support each other in making changes if necessary.  

 

Not wanting to do extra work - well, who can blame her?  Writing sentences takes work and time.  Why would she be motivated to do that or extra "stretch" work if she doesn't have to?

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#3 of 11 Old 09-19-2011, 04:36 PM
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She sounds a lot like my 3rd grader. He always does the minimal amount of work and whines about it to boot. He loves lunch, recess, special areas, and the social stuff, but does not enjoy the academics. I hear a lot of "School is boring," "I don't like school," etc. 

His attitude has rubbed off on my 1st grader, though, who will say "school is boring" when I know he loves it. He tried to act like he wasn't excited for school to start. He always has a great time, loves telling us what he is learning, and does all of his homework as soon as he gets it. 

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#4 of 11 Old 09-19-2011, 04:37 PM
 
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In some circles, it is cool to say you hate school. One of my DDs admits to liking school overall, but claims to her friends that she hates math. The truth is that math is her favorite subject.

 

I wouldn't push her to do extra work. There's no point. Instead, I'd try to help her find a hobby she enjoys, help her get interested in a good book series, etc.

 

It's really OK that she wants to play with dolls and have down time after a long day. There's nothing wrong with that.


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#5 of 11 Old 09-19-2011, 04:48 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geofizz View Post

That being said, my kids have only expressed these feelings when it turns out their needs aren't being met at school.  Sometimes that's a friends thing, sometimes it's a poor fit with the teacher, and sometimes it's that the level presented at school is inappropriate to the child.

 

The first step, then, is to have a conversation with the teacher.  What she seeing about your daughter?  Does she appear engaged in the classroom?  Has she noticed if she's struggling with any peer relationships?  If this is different behavior than last year, state it as such.  Present yourself to the teacher as on the same team - you two need to work together to figure out how things are going and to support each other in making changes if necessary.  

 

Not wanting to do extra work - well, who can blame her?  Writing sentences takes work and time.  Why would she be motivated to do that or extra "stretch" work if she doesn't have to?


You made some very good points. I strongly believe that there is usually a reason why a child would decide that they hate school. They may be bored, feel left behind, struggle with a learning disability, can't see the board because they need glasses, etc. In my case I really struggled with feeling bored in class, and ended up thriving at small schools with low student to teacher ratios. I would also recommend speaking with the teacher, and with your daughter to see what the underlying issue might be.

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#6 of 11 Old 09-22-2011, 08:00 AM
 
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When I said I hated school I meant it.

 

When I ask my kids if they like school and they say "meh" I believe them.

 

That being said - your kid has only said it once at this point, correct?  She also claims nothing is wrong and does not want to HS, so I am not sure where that leaves you.  You could try talking to her again and see if you can figure what, if anything, needs addressing. 

 

I does seem like the work she does might be boring for her.  Is it possible to work with the teacher so she has a higher balance of work that stretches her and less busy work?  (example:  stretchers are non optional, but she only has to do 3 sentences and not 5).  

 

You could also ask again in a few weeks if she likes school and see what she says.

 

I do not think she is too young to learn that if you do not like something, you have to talk about why and be open to trying to fix it.  If she isn't and is just venting that is fine.  

 

Good luck in sorting out whether there is an issue or whether she is just venting.  

 

FWIW, I think kids are pretty honest with whether or not they like school. 

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#7 of 11 Old 09-22-2011, 08:53 AM
 
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It is certainly "cool" to say you hate school to your peers and it's pretty common for tweens to say everything is boring. In college, I ran a summer camp and I cracked up how I'd watch these 11-year-olds giggle and scream for 6 hours at a water park but tell me it was "boring" on the bus ride home. Third grade is a little early for this mentality but not unheard of.

 

However, kids generally want their parents to approve of them and saying you hate school shatters that perception. I don't think most kids say that to their parents without there being a reason. Might be good to look into it a little further unless it's a one time "had a bad day" sort of thing.

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#8 of 11 Old 09-22-2011, 04:19 PM
 
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I think sometimes kids don't like school and I think sometimes it's even OK and nothing to worry about.  If she still likes the social aspect and there isn't anything specific, it could just be that she'd rather be playing.  My youngest says he doesn't like school, and in his case it's honest, although certainly some kids do say it to be cool.  The point is, he really just likes school for talking to friends and playing soccer, sometimes he likes gym class.  He'd rather hang out at home and run around, fish, watch TV, etc.  I just tell him that sometimes I'd rather not go to work but I do it because it's something people depend on me and expect me to do, and school is like that.  It's even (and I know this is heresy to some), OK not to like your job.  Getting through school just to be able to do the jobs one wants one day in the future, or just for social time, is OK, just as it's OK to work for the money or because it's convenient to the rest of your life, or just to get out of the house.  Kids don't have to love everything they do, just like adults.


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#9 of 11 Old 11-23-2011, 07:03 PM
 
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My DD HATED school-- since KG.  I believed her.  After a yr, I pulled her out and we unschooled for 3 years.  I did not push her at all-- just offered a lot of resources.  This summer, she made the decision to go back, and now, guess what?  She loves it!  She was also the type to put in minimal effort when someone else gave her an assignment/task.  . .now she is the opposite.  It has been her decision to go back and she is taking full responsibility for her choice. 

 

I dread to think of what would have happened had I left her in.  I know of plenty of people who chronically put forth minimal effort, even as adults.

 

I have never met a kid who would seriously watch TV all day.  Lately I want them to . . .work and pregnancy are making me tired, and they turn it off!

 

But anyway, it sounds like school is too easy for her.  Her optional homework should be a REPLACEMENT and not additional.  Not fair that she has to do extra . . .

 

I'd talk to her teacher about creating more of a challenge for her.

 

 


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#10 of 11 Old 11-24-2011, 05:46 AM
 
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WHen my first grader (my youngest) started saying that, three things were true: her friends were saying it and she wanted to sound like them; she was bored to tears at school; she was getting redirected and reminded a lot for being too chatty and social at school. WHen the teacher and I talked and I got the full picture, we were able to put remedies into place for at least the last two issues. THe teacher gave her much more challenging work to do and we worked together on some of the social issues. The peer issue we just have to keep working on, since that will always be something to wrestle with (knowing your own mind vs. following in the steps of others).

 

Have you chatted with the teacher yet? S/he may have some valuable insight. For what it's worth (I'm not a homeschooler) I'm not sure it's a great idea to threaten her with homeschooling. If you do end up going that route, she may have some strong feelings of shame or having disappointed you somehow.


 
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#11 of 11 Old 11-24-2011, 06:59 AM
 
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usually i can tell when dd says she hates something whether that is in the moment thing or really she does. not. like. it.

 

if you are unsure i'd bring it up at another time and ask her if she really hated something and usually she said - nah i just said it coz i was having a bad day, bad moment (this was younger when hate was a word she used v. often for melodramatic effect. now that she truly understand the word its rarely heard in our house).

 

just because she is doing well doesnt mean she likes it.

 

dd has always been outstanding, but she has always disliked school. its against her learning style. she prefers hanging on to a topic till she has gotten her needs met - not broken up into what 45 min periods. so that kind of structure she has never liked. she also feels school does not do many fun things. 


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