Elementary School Kids

best way to..
February 12, 2013 at 11:17 PM

my first grader has confident issues, always has. he always wants the reasurence that he is doing well. his teacher refuses to give him that. even on his math when he gets a 100 on the paper she wont even do a smile or star. he is falling behind and the more he falls behind the sloppyer and less confident he gets, hence making him fall even further behind. he now wont try to read. i spend monday-thursday trying to get him to be abil to READ his spelling words, if he cant read them how will he ever spell them? I have brought my conserns to the princaple twice already and thursday when i am picking him up for a vison apt i plann on talking to princaple about it. I have already stated i would prefer if he went into another class room. it wasnt even the first qurter when his teacher told us that she planned on having him held back. Last year he recived the most improved out of the entire school.  i want to him to get the help he needs to sucseed, with confidence. i dont know how to get the school to help with it.

I have only found one thing were he has no fear and that is of horses. little history :from day one he wouldnt be held by anyone exept me and trust me i "pond" him off as much as i could the first 6 months. (he was conceved by rape, i coudnt give him up but i was resentfull of him at the same time) he got extreemly ill and we nearly lost him and thats when i realized how much he ment to me. anyways saddly it curred what counseling wasnt.


  • mjande4
    by mjande4
    February 12, 2013 at 11:26 PM

    There seems to be multiple issues going on here and some of them appear to not be your son's, but yours. I'm not really clear as to why the teacher needs to give a star or smiley face when your son gets a 100%? He should know that he did well. You are expecting the teacher to build up your son's confidence and really that's not her/his job. Confidence comes from many things and not necessarily school related. Is he in any sports or activities outside of school? Is he young for his grade? Focus on activities that he succeeds in and then it will spill over into school. Good luck!

  • kmrtigger
    February 12, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    I agree with the above comment. Why not tell him yourself, how proud you are of him and his great grades? Maybe start a reward chart or jar at home for him.

    And I also second the suggestion for getting him into an activity or sport to help him feel some confidence. And check out the local libary and ask to check out some books on building self confidence for his age level to read together.

  • frndlyfn
    February 13, 2013 at 2:13 AM

    I agree with the others.  Have a stock of star stickers at home for when he brings home good test scores or good class work.   Has he had counseling at all for the family issues which are always underlying? Make reading fun , make math fun.  

  • GotSomeKids
    February 13, 2013 at 2:18 AM

    We are big on positive reinforcement.  I don't know why the teacher won't do it.  it's not that hard.  However, that said, if she doesn't and he shows you his work, give him a high five or big hug.  Tell him how smart he is and how proud you are of him.  I give my kids fist bumps everytime. 

    Honestly, he probably is looking for it more from you than his teacher.  It may not seem like it, but kids are constantly trying to win their parents approval.  I think this is why we are so big on positive reinforcement.

  • MsLogansMommy
    February 13, 2013 at 2:57 AM

    In 1st grade (although I understand it is not in their "job description") I still feel a little encouragement should be expected of the teacher and for the teachers that are going to "bash" dont waste your time my opinion on this wont change. Having said that, I do agree first and foremost it is a parents job to boost the childs self esteem and ego, but like someone else said, "how hard is it to draw a happy face or put a sticker on the paper while grading it?" My dd teacher is awesome just an amazing dedicated professional who loves what she does and one situation where I wondered why she wasnt being harder on my dd she responded that she was first trying to build up dd confidence in the materials before challenging her. She will always give stickers or happy faces etc. Alot of children in first grade need positive reinforcement from both the home and the school because we are a team or at least that is what all the teachers have said they want. Maybe this teacher is near retirement or just not happy with their job. Have you asked the teacher in a polite way why they refuse to give encouragement or maybe a better way to word it would be 'what forms of encouragement do you offer the students?' I don't think what you're asking for is unreasonable, but if for whatever reason this teacher is not capable of this then just continue to do all you can do at home to show how proud you are of him. I agree with the other responses about getting him involved in extracurricula activities.

    By the way I'm very sorry for the experiences that brought your child into your life but very happy you were able to overcome it and recognize him for being the individual he is and not just a product of rape. All children are gifts and there is a reason he was brought into your life.  Good luck

  • mjande4
    by mjande4
    February 13, 2013 at 6:47 AM

    I will add that just because a teacher doesn't put a sticker on a paper doesn't mean that they don't recognize good work. It's also possible that he is meeting minimum expectations, which do not warrant extrinsic rewards. Not giving out stickers does NOT equal unhappiness with a job. If, as a mother, YOU feel that your son needs stickers, then by all means, set him up on a sticker reward system.  I personally feel stickers are more for the preschool set and know by first grade my children were not receiving them.

  • coolmommy2x
    February 13, 2013 at 7:43 AM
    Teachers don't HAVE to give smiley faces or stars on the kids' work. Yes, it would be nice but we shouldn't teach our kids to do well because they'll get a sticker or a star. Going to the principal over and asking for a different teacher because of it is childish (IMO). This is a chance to teach DS some great lessons.

    That said, I realize he has issues. I agree with a PP to get him involved in activities where he'll build confidence in himself and not look for it from others. Counseling would help too.
  • Barabell
    February 13, 2013 at 11:06 AM

    I agree with the comments above, especially putting him in sports or scouts or something that might build his confidence outside of school.

    One thing that has not been mentioned is that you said there is only one thing he doesn't fear, which is horses. That had me a little concerned and made me wonder if your son might benefit from being evaluated by a specialist at this age. Maybe it's just because I have a son too and he was incredibly fearless at this age, and so having a polar opposite child seems off to me. You know your son better than I ever could, but I'm wondering if he has some anxiety issues.

  • corrinacs
    February 13, 2013 at 12:44 PM

    Oh wow!  As a teacher I have learned that giving children feedback like congratulating them (one on one) for a great paper, work, etc is KEY to keeping them doing a good job!  I think this teacher needs some more development and how human nature works.

    As far as what you are doing, I would probablyt be doing the same thing at this point.  he just doesnt' mesh with the teacher which isn't a fault on either side (maybe the teacher's).  But its obviously not working and he's falling fartehr and farther b ehind.  Keep pushing for a teacher change.

    Good luck!

  • Jinx-Troublex3
    February 13, 2013 at 12:46 PM
    Here, in the public school, "most improved" is one of those double edged awards. It means that while they struggle and have improved, it doesn't mean they are on par with their peers. It doesn't mean they aren't, I'm not saying that, but something to think about.

    Reading and spelling, while inter~related, are totally seperate skills. Maybe he needs tutoring, or to be pulled for resource to helphis reading.

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