Monday, April 11, 2016

Public Service Announcement

This is going to be a bit challenging to write without sounding whiny or being offensive, but here goes.

This week was report card time (again). I have four kids and the first three were always straight A students in grade school. I can honestly say I did not post about their accomplishments, (then again, I don't think facebook was a thing) pay them for good grades or other sorts of things. They whipped through homework, never studied for anything and were always rewarded with good grades for their academic abilities. Notice, they were rewarded with good grades for their academic abilities, not for their hard work. Honestly, school was not hard for any of them. I felt it was their job to do their best in school and for that, I would tote them to the extra curricular's they loved ect.

As school became harder we did a few small things to recognize hard work. Whether it was a particular subject or struggling to manage time or stay organized.

Insert Ayden Jane. I see the constant photos and accolades of parents to who are celebrating their students "hard work" and resulting honor roll. Things are in a whole new light now. Even though I was more of the grouchy parent who just expected that the kids did their best in school, they were always on the list for a reward of some sort. Many of the awards they won had little to do with hard work and a lot to do with being smart kids with all the advantages of a supportive home and a fully working neurological system.

I mean, in all honesty, I think there is a lot more reason to celebrate Ayden Jane's accomplishments of B and C in her academic classes in second grade than there ever was for my other kids straight A's. Well, if you are truly rewarding hard work. I could ask for more accommodations and even modifications to the curriculum in order to improve her grades. I could have her sent to a special needs classroom and given alternate instruction. I could do my best to demand an aide for her.... But all of these things would simply be so that she could get A's and B's. I don't know that she would learn any more than she is now and I am sure she would not be working as hard.

So for the families who's kids truly work hard to receive those good grades than congratulate away. I would, however, say be sure the message to your kids is clear. You are proud of them for working hard, learning to use their talents and being the wonderful little people God made them to be. Sort of like, don't let them get caught up in feeling like you love them and are proud of them because of the grades they achieve. All kids are so much more than grades and eventually, they will come across something that does not come easy and the grade may not be an A.

We all know you will still love them to the moon, just make sure they know.

No comments:

Post a Comment