Among my five children, there are some who get good school grades very easily, and some who don’t. That’s why I’m so glad someone gave me this great advice, “Worry less about the grade at the top of the page, and more about how your child got it.”
That makes sense! Here’s how it works in real life. So my child brings home a C. This child studied very hard. This child gave it his best. I am not going to get upset about that C. Now example two: this child brought home a B- on a report. This child didn’t study at all. This child didn’t even try to give it his best. I will probably talk to this child about that grade.
You see, even if a child makes an A, I still want to be sure he has good study habits, a good work ethic, and understands how to prepare. And for my children who things don’t come easily to? I want them to try their best so that I can then step in and offer help where they need it. I might get them a tutor, work with them myself, or talk to the teacher. I will also praise their effort, because although there may not always be a grade for that, I want my child to feel appreciated for doing his best. [Click to Tweet]
Here are 5 tips for reacting the right way to school grades.
1. Assess yourself.
Before you talk with your child, look at yourself and see what your motives are regarding your children’s grades. Answer the question, “Why do I want my child to make good grades?” Do you want them to make good grades so that you can look good in front of their teachers? Do you want them to make good grades so that they can go to a prestigious college? Once you can identify what’s behind your desire for them to make good grades, consider if it’s a legitimate reason and remember that your children are not their grades.
2. Look for the good.
Look beyond the grades and remind yourself of all of the wonderful qualities you child has. Is she doing well emotionally and socially? That’s a huge A+ right there. Is she kind and responsible at home? Does she try really hard at school? Start from a point of praise and move on from there.
3. Take a deep breath.
If you need to cool down before you talk to your child, be sure to take the time you need. You don’t want to swoop down on your child when you’re in a state of anger or when you’re tired or irritated about something else. Breath deeply and pray.
4. Speak with love.
This is your child you’re talking about here. You’d give your life for this person, so give him your love. Don’t name call or generalize. Think about the impact your words are going to have on your child. He will likely remember what you say for a very long time.
5. Take action.
Before you’ve talked with your child, investigate plans of action. If you’re going to implement new study rules, or hire a tutor, have those ideas in place so that you can present them to your child at the end of your talk. Give your child hope. Give your child understanding. Give your child love.
Looking for more ways to make this year count? Check out my ebook, Every School Year Counts
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