A parent is concerned, "I am so afraid for my son. He didn't do well in school last year and the message I've gotten is, He's not living up to his potential." I don't want this to turn into an expectation. All he wants to do this summer is play video games and watch shows on the computer. What is a parent to do?" Signed, Tearing out hair.
RORY'S REPLY – HOW TO DO IT "NOW!"
Wow! You've said a mouthful, but here's how I look at the problem, "Let's go back to flooding struggling kids with reading and math success NOW!" They're not going to go anywhere unless there's a payoff for them. Ask yourself, "What's the payoff?"
Don't begin with tests and evaluations. Don't begin with tutoring. Don't begin by taking away video-games or imposing other punishments, all of which reinforce just how in conflict kids are with parents and teachers. When you have a parent or teacher trying to teach a kid who isn't cooperating, what is the outcome? The outcome leans towards "failure."
Turn this all around by remembering everything you know about setting kids up for success. Kids are just like all the rest of us, we do what's in our own self interest and we like social recognition. With this in mind, we always need to return to our fundamental truth for all instruction, "Cooperation must be established BEFORE additional instruction commences."
Thanks for all you do to teach kids to succeed with reading, math and study-skills.
Rory Donaldson, Chief Brain, Success with reading, math and study-skills teacher, Brainsarefun. To save academic lives Brainsarefun's Fearless Friday Blog is published fearlessly every Friday, © 2012 – 2014 by Rory Donaldson, firstname.lastname@example.org, 860-304-3178. Our kids can do it.