How to teach your child the right attitude to grades

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How to teach your child the right attitude to grades

“Learn to get straight A’s!” – This is the admonition every one of us heard from our elders when we first went to school. In many families, if not in all, the word “Loser” is an unflattering characteristic. Is it worth taking grades so seriously and teaching the same to children? What kind of attitude toward the marks in the diary would be more appropriate?

About different attitudes to grades
What is a grade and word families? This is a kind of scale, which reflects the depth of knowledge of the child in a particular subject.

While the child is a preschooler, the parent must answer himself: how does he feel about grades? His attitude will be copied by the child. And mom or dad is likely to have the same opinion as their parents. After all, several generations have been brought up under the same educational system, in which five points is an excellent mark, two points – bad, or even terrible.

Many people are used to thinking in such a way: if a child gets a “D” grade, it is very bad, and it is necessary to express your displeasure about it and scold him. And someone thinks exactly the opposite. One mother I know said: “I celebrate a child’s twos because it’s rare!” The same situation can be presented as drama or a collapse of parental hopes, or you can treat it like this mom did.

What matters is how you first react to each grade, from an A to a 1 and difference between whose and who’s. It happens! What will you form with your reaction? Fear or motivation to get it right?

How to talk to your child about grades
Let’s not discuss fours and fives: usually good and excellent grades of children are a joy for parents. Although, of course, I know that in some families a B is not a high enough mark, and this is a separate topic of conversation. A more serious problem seems to me to be the sharply negative parental attitude toward F’s and C’s, which is passed on to the children as well.

It is very important that you, when you open the diary, try to refrain from raging emotions. A grade is just a way to find out what the teacher thinks of the child as a student. A “F” is the child’s problem, it is up to him or her to fix, and he or she will only fix it when he or she wants to. If a child gets a “D” or “C” in his or her diary, calmly ask him or her simple but important questions.

“How do you feel about it and”
The child may not be happy with his or her own grade. Be sympathetic and don’t scold him. He gets upset when he gets a “D” or “C” for the first time, because the child knows from the beginning that other results are expected of him.

Many people think, “I will scold him, and he will try harder. He won’t. How does the child see this situation? “I’m in trouble, but I got scolded for it. I’m not loved.” I’m not exaggerating: the child’s psyche is designed so that up to a certain age a child does not distinguish between halftones in the emotional sphere. As he sees it, parents can either love him unconditionally, or dislike him. Therefore, you should not raise your voice, shame or punish your child. Motivation to learn well is based on inspiration and desire, not fear of parental punishment.

If he is unhappy with a bad grade, he will seek to rectify the situation.

“How could you help yourself and not get that grade?”
And here it doesn’t matter what the child answers, or if he answers at all. In any case, he or she will think about how to prevent the situation from happening again next time.

“How can you change the situation?”
By asking this, you are telling the child that he or she can make a difference. When the child believes this, he or she has a plan of action lined up: do this subject extra, read books on the subject, ask the teacher how to fix the grade. The latter is especially important: when the teacher sees that the child cares and needs his subject, he treats the student with attention and helps.

“Do you need my help?”
The child takes responsibility for learning for himself, learning for his own sake. But he should know that he can always turn to you for help. And you will give it. No need to take control of execution: to set the time for classes, deprive them of cartoons and walks, and reproach the child if he deviates from the plan.

For sure the schoolboy will have difficulties along the way, but when he overcomes them he will realize that he is the one who solves everything. Perhaps he will not get a high grade, but will train to manage their time, set goals and go to them. School will be over, grades will lose their relevance, but the skill to set goals and achieve them will remain.

The opposite situation is likely: the child will not want to change anything and will say that he doesn’t need this subject. Let him answer one more question.

“What do you want to be?”
Not everything that is studied at school is useful in adult life, especially in the scope of the program. But all subjects are necessary and important. Let’s say a child gets a “D” in math, and when you ask him, he answers that he wants to be an engineer or a pilot. Your task is to explain to him that without knowledge of mathematics it is impossible. Search for information about different scientists and engineers, tell your child their biographies, and help him or her understand why math is important to him or her.

What if the child wants to be a musician and a translator? How then can we justify to him the need to study mathematics? We can come back to this when the child is older and understands the importance of this science. In the meantime, it’s better to shift all the attention to what he’s good at, what he’s interested in. Emphasize: to switch his attention, not completely abandon mathematics.

There are no specialties where you only have to be good at one discipline, and the rest are unimportant. If you have your own clinic, it’s not enough to be a doctor. You have to be a little bit of a lawyer, a little bit of an economist, know the basics of management and various business skills. Only in combination all this will help to achieve success. Make an agreement with your child: “You study hard on your favorite subjects, but on those you do the bare minimum.

By asking these questions, you are teaching your child responsibility for his or her academic success. In order for the grades to change, you need to make him or her realize this responsibility.

Help your child learn
You, too, are somewhat responsible for your child’s learning. 50 percent of what he does in his homework determines how well he learns, because it is at home, when he works independently, to consolidate the material. Does he do the work himself, or do you somehow take it on yourself? Are there good conditions for learning? And there are many of them: the choice of school, and a properly equipped workplace with good lighting, and the ability to make sure that no one disturbs the child. It’s not uncommon for a child to get a “D” for an undone assignment, simply because he didn’t know what was asked, or wrote it down incorrectly. Don’t solve this problem for him, but suggest a solution: you can call your classmates, for example. He doesn’t know where to get the information for the report? Advise him to look on the Internet, the library, or together leaf through an encyclopedia, show him how to look for material. But do not write the report instead of him!

We do not know what knowledge will be in demand when the child becomes an adult. But we can say for sure that people who can learn, ask questions, and know where to look for answers will be in demand in all eras. It is in your power to help your child become such a person.

No matter what happens to your child, you have to be on his or her side. For example, he says to you, “Mom, tomorrow I don’t want to go to school. We will have a difficult test, and I am not ready for it and I won’t have time to learn anything. Let him stay at home, but on the strict condition that such situations are exceptional and should not happen more than once a year. You can also say no, but with justification: for example, you are not convinced by his arguments, and yours are more compelling.

And again about the D’s.
Why do we think that the child should not have bad grades? He has no right to make a mistake? Does he go to school for the numbers in his notebook and daybook? Then it’s not a question of education. Does he go to school for knowledge? Then if the child tries, he has it anyway.

The other day my daughter came to me and said: “Mom, can you believe it, we have a girl in school who has never gotten F’s!” Looking at her, I thought maybe she was a little jealous, and I said: “I feel sorry for her, because this girl hasn’t experienced the whole gamut of emotions.” Allow the child and yourself that emotion. And let it be infrequent.

All-in-all, our children don’t need as much knowledge as they do in school. But they do need a friend in the form of mom and dad. Trust between parent and child is also a very important discipline to learn at home. Every day. Year after year.