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Old 09-15-2011, 11:43 PM
 
7,497 posts, read 9,294,064 times
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I do agree you should get on your son and talk to his teachers about his progress, but I suppose the way you do it it really critical. He could be having problems with anything right now and if I were you I'd try to get the school counselor to talk to him first. This does two things; it lets the school know what's going on and gives your son a chance to talk to somebody he'd be less likely to think he's in trouble with. Then at least at that point you might be able to rule out anything really bad, and maybe be closer to figuring out what his exact problems are. He's probably having a hard time transitioning as others have said. He could also be having trouble with a class, several classes, a teacher, several teachers, a student, several students, and/or he could really want to solve his problems himself or hope he can just sweep them under the rug.

I also had a hard time with the middle school transition. I've griped already about my math troubles on this website already, being in college and finally getting the help I need with it, how many years later. Well for me it started in fifth grade with long devision, and I remember my teacher sending me out to the hall to finish my assignments while the class moved on. Needless to say I fell behind and never quite caught up. To top things off, I get to middle school, and have a nasty math teacher. Started falling behind right away.

Rather than offering help, this lovely lady had such tactics as keeping failing students (and there were a lot) after school in our classrooms every day until "our grades went up" (but never being there to help; another teacher ran the after-school whatever-it-was). She also on occasion had peers call us at home to tell us to get our grades up, badgered me continually about my grades and threatened to call my mom. I don't remember her ever doing it.

My mom never went to conferences and I did well in most of my other classes with exception to some computer classes we had (though I think I still technically passed all but one). I was well-behaved, I never got in trouble in school (except by her) and so nobody really thought I was a problem. Beyond complaining to a counselor about the teacher once, I never did anything, and hoped all my problems would go away. So yeah I passed sixth grade flunking two classes...fun times those were...
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Old 09-16-2011, 01:01 AM
 
Location: St. Louis
9,473 posts, read 16,437,892 times
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It's possible that this kid could have ADD that hasn't been picked up on before and if it is, it's likely the inattentive variety. These kids really struggle with organization and consistency and when they say they lost those papers between school and home, they're often not lying b/c it might be somewhere in that mess of a backpack or locker or under the bed, but they can't imagine where and the thought of going thru it to find the papers literally makes their brain go to sleep. Kids with the inattentive ADD often don't bother anyone enough to get their symptoms noticed when they're younger and then they start to a new school where expectations are higher, and wham! They really don't know what hit them. If it's not depression and nothing has happened, then I'd certainly look into this possibility.
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Old 09-17-2011, 09:08 PM
 
2 posts, read 9,268 times
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Thank you all for your input and advice, I spoke with three of his teachers and sorted some things out..somewhat..

He is definitely NOT paying attention to half of what the teachers are saying because his language teacher said he had a worksheet to do that night and he said she didn't give him anything. After looking right there, yes she did and he didnt even know he had it Some things affecting him is probably half to do with what is going on in his school atm. His teacher is no longer his teacher, she got moved to 7th grade and now he has a new homeroom, spelling, and language teacher. It happened suddenly without notice, seems there is a lot of chaos atm there with new classrooms, new teachers, and 2x the amount of students this year.

I will be looking into getting him counseling monday and speaking with the teachers more because he has and assignment that was due friday that he completed but did not bother turning in.
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Old 09-18-2011, 04:33 AM
 
1,951 posts, read 1,331,823 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tmbailey2011 View Post
My son started the 6th grade this year, and has all Fs in his classes. In two of the classes he has a 20%. ...........

I dont know what else to do to get it through to him that he has to do his work and has to do it to the best of his ability. Ive taken away sweets, games, tv and his right to go to pokemon league but he still doesnt care to get his work done.
Been there done that. Your son is probably hanging with a crowd that legitimizes his under achiever behavior. It's a form of rebellion. Good luck to you. I ripped my hair out with my son, and now I'm at the point where, if he doesn't take initiative this year, I'm going to let him take the GED and drop out and learn his lessons the hard way. I'm not messing with him anymore. If they don't care, there's nothing you can do. My kid is 18 and he's in 11th grade. He doesn't know it, but this might be his last year.

At least my son has a job and he's VERY good at his work ethic. That's one thing I'm very glad and relieved about. With a GED he isn't sunk. He could still do okay. He's above average intelligence and scores well on the national tests. Top 1 percent in reading writing and average in Math.

I don't know. I think he just hates school.
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Old 09-18-2011, 07:34 AM
 
2,596 posts, read 4,646,543 times
Reputation: 3949
Quote:
Originally Posted by tmbailey2011 View Post
Thank you all for your input and advice, I spoke with three of his teachers and sorted some things out..somewhat..

He is definitely NOT paying attention to half of what the teachers are saying because his language teacher said he had a worksheet to do that night and he said she didn't give him anything. After looking right there, yes she did and he didnt even know he had it Some things affecting him is probably half to do with what is going on in his school atm. His teacher is no longer his teacher, she got moved to 7th grade and now he has a new homeroom, spelling, and language teacher. It happened suddenly without notice, seems there is a lot of chaos atm there with new classrooms, new teachers, and 2x the amount of students this year.

I will be looking into getting him counseling monday and speaking with the teachers more because he has and assignment that was due friday that he completed but did not bother turning in.
What really may help your son is to give him a method to get organized every period in one central place. He needs to have a homework agenda where he writes down all of his assignments for every class. At the end of each class period, his teacher needs to glance at the box for their class and initial if he copied down the homework correctly, or make him do it correctly if he didn't. Most teachers either have a homework box on the board or they post their assignments online. Your son needs to learn how to be organized, and this will eliminate the "No, she never gave me a worksheet" step.

Then, have a separate place where the teacher initials if homework for the day was handed in. Your son will need to walk up to the teacher at first and hand her the paper and the agenda. If he doesn't get something initialed, assume he's being sneaky and didn't do it/turn it in, rather than he forgot. There MUST be a complete loss of privileges every time, no exceptions. You must find a way to get your son invested in this process.

Additionally, ask your son's teachers if he could be moved up as close to the front of the room as they can put him so there are fewer distractions from other kids. It's much easier to flake out in the back row than the first row and the teacher can more easily tap on his desk if he's zoned out.
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Old 09-18-2011, 11:58 AM
 
15,308 posts, read 16,874,788 times
Reputation: 15029
Quote:
Originally Posted by tmbailey2011 View Post
Thank you all for your input and advice, I spoke with three of his teachers and sorted some things out..somewhat..

He is definitely NOT paying attention to half of what the teachers are saying because his language teacher said he had a worksheet to do that night and he said she didn't give him anything. After looking right there, yes she did and he didnt even know he had it Some things affecting him is probably half to do with what is going on in his school atm. His teacher is no longer his teacher, she got moved to 7th grade and now he has a new homeroom, spelling, and language teacher. It happened suddenly without notice, seems there is a lot of chaos atm there with new classrooms, new teachers, and 2x the amount of students this year.

I will be looking into getting him counseling monday and speaking with the teachers more because he has and assignment that was due friday that he completed but did not bother turning in.
I would definitely suggest an evaluation for ADD. He may not be ADHD, but he could be ADD.

If so, then he needs someone to teach him how to organize himself in a systematic way.

Canadian video about ADD and ADHD. It shows what is happening in the brain when a child has ADD. Canada is way ahead of the US on understanding and training teachers.

ADHD Music Video | ADD ADHD Blog.com

Here's an interesting site you may want to look at as well
ADHD Podcast | ADHD Video Podcast | ADHD TV
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Old 09-18-2011, 03:35 PM
 
Location: St. Louis
9,473 posts, read 16,437,892 times
Reputation: 13179
Quote:
Originally Posted by tmbailey2011 View Post
Thank you all for your input and advice, I spoke with three of his teachers and sorted some things out..somewhat..

He is definitely NOT paying attention to half of what the teachers are saying because his language teacher said he had a worksheet to do that night and he said she didn't give him anything. After looking right there, yes she did and he didnt even know he had it Some things affecting him is probably half to do with what is going on in his school atm. His teacher is no longer his teacher, she got moved to 7th grade and now he has a new homeroom, spelling, and language teacher. It happened suddenly without notice, seems there is a lot of chaos atm there with new classrooms, new teachers, and 2x the amount of students this year.

I will be looking into getting him counseling monday and speaking with the teachers more because he has and assignment that was due friday that he completed but did not bother turning in.
Yes, you're going to see a lot more of that I'm afraid, with SD firing teachers or not hiring any more due to the economy. Class sizes are much bigger these days and then when the year starts they have to scramble to make it work, much as you're describing here.

It sounds like he's going to have to deal with this and helping him get organized will be a huge help. If he didn't turn in an assignment that he did, then he probably couldn't find it and that's a true sign that he really needs some help in this area. There are books out that can help with this and if I think of a title I"ll post again, but do some searching too. Or if it's really bad, consider hiring a coach. I don't believe in hiring someone to organize for him b/c they will do it their way rather than work with what works for him.

If he has ADD, he may also have an auditory processing disorder and if he does, then the teacher handing out an assignment orally isn't going to do much good. It may be as simple of a fix as asking the teacher to write it on the board, which most do anyway.
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Old 09-20-2011, 06:38 AM
 
Location: Charlotte, NC
1,403 posts, read 2,075,762 times
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Is your son angry about something? Is he having trouble at school? Something is definitely wrong with him. Sounds like my brother when he was in school. He had anger issues.
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Old 09-20-2011, 10:48 AM
 
616 posts, read 704,605 times
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If he watches spongebob squarepants or too much TV period. that could be your problem.
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Old 09-21-2011, 01:43 AM
 
Location: Long Island via Chapel Hill NC, Go Heels?
467 posts, read 613,684 times
Reputation: 384
One thing you have to remember is that middle school doesn't decide where he goes to college, High School does. You should gradually assimilate your son into the process of doing work daily. Ask the teacher(s) that teach classes he is struggling in what the homework consists of and how he should do it. Don't force the blame on the teacher. #1. Teachers hate that so much, #2. It's usually not their fault. It's the teacher's job to teach and inform, not inhale parental babble and assume the subservient position as babysitter.
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