Want to make a kid feel dumb?

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Send them to school.

***This is a rant-ish post of my own personal experience as a parent within the public school system with very sensitive (and smart kids)***

I am sure it also clearly exposes some of my own insecurities and issues with school as well.

Princess is in 3rd grade.  Everyday after school there are tears.  Math is confusing her- I'll try and explain it a different way- a way that makes sense in my head, because, ya know maybe we think similarly and all--- but then she flips because her teacher said for her to do it differently and she.must.do.as.the.teacher.says. <<>>>

Somehow we make it through the the math, science, and on to English- grammar specifically.  As a product of Catholic schools I can diagram a sentence and parse a noun like no one's business.  But there are more tears. 

Finally, in the morning she comes down the stairs and tells me she wishes she were like some other kid in school who is the smartest.  It is hard to explain to an 8 year old that the other kid may appear to be really good at something, s/he may have difficulty but hiding it, maybe s/he has struggles in other parts of his or her life. 

More importantly- she is great just the way she is.  Just how she is.  So math is hard- that is only this specific math- arithmetic for me sucks- but I can do differential equations and higher order math without a problem.  She is one of the most caring and sweet girls I know.  She is amazing, smart, and wonderful.

It makes me so sad to have to build her up every morning for her to come home so sad.  It makes me so sad for her to compare herself to other kids- they are not the same- they are individuals. 

Honestly, I did the same- and I still do it-- compare myself to others- myself always coming up short.  I do not want her to repeat that pattern. 


Sandra Kohlmann said...

Hmm...I had 13 years of public school education and can diagram the heck out of a sentence, too. This sounds like it has nothing to do with public/private/other schooling. It sounds like an issue of the pairing of your daughter and her teacher and probably has lots to do with the nature of the other kids in her class, her own coping skills, and probably a ton of other tiny other things, too. Have you asked her teacher for her take on how Princess is doing? About P's options for approaching math her own way? Have you talked to the school guidance counselor or asked for Princess to see him/her? There are so many resources and options for these sorts of situations. I sure hope things get better for everybody involved!

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