desperate for suggestions & help

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-20-2004
desperate for suggestions & help
4
Wed, 09-10-2008 - 4:00pm

I hope someone can shine some light on me. my DH and I are at a loss here.

We seems to be loosing our 8 year old son. School has only been in for a month now and I am already loosing it and so is his teacher.

Tylor is overall a good kid, the oldest of 3 children. Lately he has been not respecting me, he basically ignores anything I have to say unless i raise my voice, I am so tired of raising my voice. He will basically give me the same "okay" but not do as I ask (usually with school stuff)

At school and home he isn't applying himself the way we know he can. He writes sloppy as can be, doesn't try really hard and is constantly redoing papers to get a better grade. He won't follow the rules I have set for example, do your homework at home not while waiting for the bus, put everything away where it belongs...

Every day we all sit down to do homework (I have a 7 year old son also), I help when needed and correct it and they are instructed to put their homework in their homework folder and it goes into their backpacks...doesn't seem too much. Well isn't following this, his homework for some reason rarely ends up on the ground and lost for a few days and he has to turn it in late and is missing part of his recess because of it.

At school he isn't taking things seriously, just "getting through it" and not seeming to care that it is wrong. During a math assessment test he got a 12/30 correct, 5 of those he answered with 0000 and he was missing basic addition and subtraction. We have been told by his teacher that if he comes home with a check he can redo it for a better grade so we are ALWAYS redoing things. His teacher is just as frustrated as we are, I am in constant e-mail conversations with him in hopes that between us we can help him.

I have tried taking things away and it doesn't effect him, I have grounded him with little response to that. he was so excited about going hunting with his dad this year for the first time and when we told him he couldn't he didn't even react.

I ask him if anything is wrong and his answer is always NOTHING. I asked him if there is some way I can help him he says no, I asked him if there was anything I we could work towards special and he says no he has everything he wants (which I know is not true).

I praise him when he brings home good work so it is not all negative in our house.

Does anyone have any insite or can give me suggestions. I just signed him up for cub scouts so I am hoping this helps a bit and he will find an activity outside of school he likes (not a sports kid at all).

Thank you in advance.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Thu, 09-11-2008 - 2:22pm

Colleen, I'm thinking about how I would handle this if I was in your situation. One thing I really liked about 3rd grade is that the teachers had them all sign a homework contract. It spelled out when and where they would be doing their homework, that they were responsible for doing it, giving it to their parent for review and for turning it in. What my job as the parent was (review for neatness and doneness but not correct and then to sign off on their planner each day). I also kept repeating that I already passed 3rd grade, I wasn't doing it again. I was there to help but it was up to him to ask me for help and to do the work.

Philip schedule is like this:

Home from school, 15 minute break for a snack and a drink. Then we go over what homework needs to be done for tomorrow and if there is any long term projects that he needs to work on. We figure out what he is going to do first. Then we set the timer and he works for 20 minutes. After that time we review what he has done and see what else is left. That takes maybe 10 minutes. He gets another 15 minute break. There is no tv or video games during that break. He can build legos, read a book or play a game with his sister or me. After the break we repeat the 20 minutes of work, with 10 minutes of review/finishing up. Some nights he is done other nights he has been goofying around and he ends up having to continue working in 20/30 increments. There is no tv or video games at all until his homework is done. If he doesn't finish by 7pm then he doesn't get any tv that night at all(Its 6pm for any time on his DS). This way he is wasting his time, not mine and it makes me less likely to get mad about his goofying off. His teacher told me that his homework should not take more than 1hour 15minutes each night, if it is taking him longer she wants to know (she would prefer that we stop and write a note saying he worked for that long and didn't finish. So finding out his teacher doesn't expect him to work on this all night and that he is not going to get any tv time if he doesn't get it done in time has made him focus more.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-20-2004
Thu, 09-11-2008 - 4:23pm

Thank you for your response. We are similar with schedule and rules. Yesterday was a better day and he admitted he was wrong and I was right about a lost paper and he had no issues doing his homework.

So your child's teacher expects a 3rd grader to do 1 hour 25 minutes in homework every night, that is crazy, we aren't even close to that.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 03-19-2003
Thu, 09-11-2008 - 5:12pm

He's in 4th grade this year. Last year they were expected to take no more than an hour. Most of the time he got it done by the time the first 20 minutes were up. It was his writing assignments that took him the longest. He would take forever to come up with spelling sentences or the opening sentence for his papers.

It shouldn't take him the 1 hour and 15 minutes to get it done most nights. Most nights it should take him about 30 minutes, leaving the rest of the homework time for reading or to work on a long term project. This is why I have no sympathy for him when he complains about how much work he has.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-23-2008
Wed, 09-24-2008 - 1:39pm
have you had your son evaluated for ADHD and learning disabilities?