Educating Our Kids

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By Rebecca Teti

Fridays: Education

(Join each day’s Coffee Talk discussion: Mon: Parenting; Tues: Open Forum; Wed: NFP; Thu: Marriage; Fri: Education; Sat/Sun: Changing Roles)

Whether your children attend school or are homeschooled, this is the spot to ask questions about curricula, religious education, parent-teacher relationships, or academic concerns of any kind.

Please join us!

Rebecca Teti


  • AAAAH! My kids are driving me crazy! My first grader won't do her work which is one thing, but the attitude, and the "I can't"response when I know she can is can is so infuriating for me. I don't know where the attitude is coming from, although I hear a lot of other moms with 7 year old girls telling me they have the same problem. Any ideas for changing attitudes as well as dealing with them when they aren't trying?

    Posted on May 3rd, 2013 at 10:51 AM by Marie

  • I feel your pain!!!! The only thing that I have found is the right motivation--unfortunately the motivation only seems to work for a day or two. I can tell you that when my now 9 yo (#1) was in first grade he could easily spend an hour and a half looking at his math and crying (literal tears) about how he couldn't do it then the next day (with motivation) would get literally twice as much done in ten minutes and get only 1 or 2 wrong. I would get so mad!!! Now, at 9, he does Teaching Textbooks (for math) and I never hear any complaints . . . he actually is much more self-motivated about all his subjects so there is hope! The other thing is that I have changed the programs he is doing so enjoys them more . . . something that I think is more trial and error and requires a bit of an older kid (ie 3rd grade) to really make a difference. By the way I have a 6 yo boy (#3) who I am convinced, many days, may be the end of me for the same reasons!

    Posted on May 3rd, 2013 at 11:42 AM by Lisa

  • Thank you for that!

    Posted on May 3rd, 2013 at 8:25 PM by Marie

  • Yep, very normal, especially this time of year ;) Like the other poster said, motivation is the key. At that age kids typically aren't as self motivate as we'd like them to be. They need external motivation for now. Make sure you schedule some breaks....breaks she really wants but will miss if certain things aren't done first but build in extra time. For example, if handwriting, reading, spelling take 60 minutes then give her 90. Start school at 8:00 (or whenever) and snack or recess or cartoon or whatever is at 9:30 if she's done. Then back to the books (starting with something easy for a transition and do the same thing until recess. Kids that age typically need to work in smaller chunks of time and then need to do something else. I would try to avoid letting her have total freedom during her break. It's really hard to stop right in the middle of something with the siblings to go back to schoolwork. Try to keep everyone on the same break routine (if you have more kids). It gets easier. But remember, all kid are different. Environment matters too. My 3rd grader is soooo easily distracted by everyone else....and with 8 kids here it's hard to accommodate him (he wants to be by everyone...just wants them all to remain silent :) ) but as he gets older, he now understands why I send him to the next room to finish one task. Good luck :)

    Posted on May 4th, 2013 at 1:26 PM by RealMom4Life

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