What do/would you do if your kid got a bad grade?

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by waterfall, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. waterfall

    waterfall Virtuoso

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    Jul 20, 2011

    I'm just curious. I mean your actual child, not your students. Another thread about summer reading got me thinking. As I mentioned in that thread, a lot of the teachers did extremely nit-picky questions (like asking about small details in the book) to try and see who read the book and who read sparknotes or something like that. As a result, most people got poor grades on those tests. I remember a lot of my friends getting grounded or getting in trouble because they failed or got a bad grade on them.

    My parents were teachers and because of that people always thought they'd be extra hard on me grade-wise. What's interesting is that they actually weren't at all. I've always had a strong work ethic, but hypothetically if I were to blow off an assignment or not study for a test, I think that would be a different story. I might have been "in trouble" for something like that. However, they knew I studied and worked hard so they were fine with whatever grades I got. My freshman year, I got several D's on the summer reading test, along with pretty much the rest of my class. Most of my friends were grounded because of it. My mom knew I read the books and even took notes, so she wasn't upset with me at all. I did well in the rest of the class, so I still ended up with an A anyway. However, my friends' parents knew they read the book also, but told them they should have studied harder.

    My parents were also really good about recognizing what was my best...I worked VERY hard in math and struggled a lot. I had to spend several hours a night just getting our usual 30 math problems done. Once I got to HS, my parents couldn't remember the math well enough to help me anymore (they both teach elementary and it had obviously been a long time since they'd had that stuff) so I had a tutor through most of my math classes. I remember them taking me out to dinner once because I got a b- on a final- they knew that for me in that subject, that was an excellent grade that I worked hard for.

    People always thought I had it rough having teachers for parents- but I think it actually worked out pretty well for me! They also made sure I didnt attend either of their schools and were really careful to not be the "helicopter" type and complain about every little thing even though they may have been more aware of what "should be happening" in any classroom than the typical parent.

    So do you think that you're more understanding of your kids' grades because you're a teacher? Or do you expect more of them?
     
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  3. kme93

    kme93 Companion

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    Jul 20, 2011

    I don't have kids yet, but I hope being a teacher would help. My parents were very understanding also. My parents knew I worked hard and always did my homework. A couple times in junior high and high school after a particularly grueling time my mom let me play hookey and she took me out for lunch.
     
  4. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jul 20, 2011

    My youngest daughter struggles very much with reading and spelling. Whatever grades she gets, she gets. Making her feel bad doesn't do anything to change the fact that she has auditory processing issues.

    The other 2 have no academic issues, but have occasionally brought home a grade they weren't proud of. To their credit, I've always known about it the moment they got off the bus.

    We talk about the importance of doing your best, and I sign the test. It's not the end of the world.

    Behavior issues would be a different matter.
     
  5. Marci07

    Marci07 Devotee

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    I used to be really strict with my daughter about her grades up until 5th grade when she had a really tough teacher who caused a lot anxiety and stress on my daughter.

    After that horrible year, I've become the type of parent waterfall describes. I know she tries her best and I'm here to offer the help when needed. I see how much effort she puts into her studies that I worry more about her taking a little break here and there.
     
  6. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    I want both of my kids to do well in school. Having said that for my oldest I was okay with lower grades because she worked hard to get them & school is hard for her.

    My son, I expect better grades. But no, he doesn't get grounded for a low grade.
     
  7. The Fonz

    The Fonz Math teacher (for now...)

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    Jul 20, 2011

    I don't have kids yet, but like Alice said whatever she/he gets, she/he gets. As long as I know that the kid is trying, that's all that matters to me.
     
  8. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    I also do not have kids yet (on the way), but I know we will have high expectations of them in school. I am not as worried about them getting a singular bad grade on a test or assignment, for me it is the final result that is more significant. A's and B's throughout elementary and middle school would be expected. Anything less than that would not be acceptable and we would have to sit down and find out what we did wrong/can do differently. If the poor grade on a report card were to come from a lack of effort, then some form of grounding would be in order. That is what my parents did with me, and it worked fairly well.
     
  9. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    My daughter has struggled in her Spanish class since being here. One bimester she got a 5 (a 6 is the minimum number grade for passing), and we put her in a strict schedule with one hour for rest after school, then homework for an hour, then chores, shower, etc. The idea was to ensure she was putting effort into her homework and studying, not anything else. We also restricted her from going out to play with her friends (she has many in this neighborhood) except for on the weekends. Before the schedule, as long as she had completed her homework and chores, she was allowed to play with her neighborhood friends. Her tight schedule during the school year pretty much does not allow her to do that,but I think I like it that way. We did this because her grades were dropping, and after the tighter schedule, her grades improved. She simply hadn't been working at her potential.
     
  10. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Virtuoso

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    I don't have children, and my parents weren't teachers. I have, however, taught a lot of children with parents who were teachers. Several of them have had the policy that the teacher parent did not contact the teachers for anything. That was the job of the "non-teacher" parent. All were typically only expecting their children to work to their potential, but weren't "pushy" about it with the kids or the teachers.
     
  11. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    My oldest son is in deep doo-doo for getting a D in English. Now, if a D was the best he could do, then he wouldn't be in trouble, however, this is the same child that reads Charles Dickens, Victor Hugo and Leo Tolstoy for fun (he's 12). The reason for the D is because he was lazy and didn't do his homework regularly, and even when he did do it, he failed to turn it in. As a result of his laziness during the school year, I have him on a summer writing schedule, so that he can "make up" the writing he should have done last year and didn't. He's writes one to three pages a day. These pages can be anything. They can be a short story, a poem, and summary of some current event, or anything else that strikes his fancy. I'm not out to be mean, but out to get him in the habit of writing so that when it comes time to do assignments next year, his writing will be more natural and less "work".
     
  12. bonneb

    bonneb Fanatic

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    Jul 20, 2011

    We did not push our daughter. She had teachers in private school with a high level of expectations. She was very bright and her weakness was putting off studies till bedtime then having to be up late to do work.

    We always encouraged her to do her best. DH put the blitz on pressuring her over grades. I encouraged her to aim high. Everything changed once she got to college and had to maintain an average. Now she feels pressured. If she loses her scholarship, she might not finish college. She has done well.

    I would say encourage kids to do their best, have a set time for studies. If there is no homework, as in lower grades, make it table time: everyone is at the table reading or working on homework or writing about their day.

    It is mean to pressure kids over grades. I had parents who didn't seem to know which end was up. I would bring home all A grades with one B, and my dad would say "What happened there?" It always hurt my feelings. (otherwise he was great)
     
  13. Cerek

    Cerek Aficionado

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    Jul 20, 2011

    My uncle and aunt never accepted anything less than an "A" or "A+" from my cousin when we were in school. She had ulcers by the time she was 15 and felt like a failure because she was the Salutatorian of her class instead of Valedictorian. Never mind that the GPA between the two was the closest in school history (literally coming down to hundreths of a point).

    My parents, on the other hand, were happy as long as I did my best. I was worried when I came home with straight "C"s in typing, because I was always an "A/B" student. My mom said "So, that just means you're average at typing. That's fine by me." (she, on the other hand, could type over 90/wpm on old manual typerwriters).

    As for my own kids, they are all very capable of A's and B's, and in fact, should be capable of straight A's if they really try, but I don't worry about that.

    If they bring home a bad grade, my only concern is if they deserved the grade or not. If it is because they didn't do their work, then yeah, they deserve the grade and I expect them to do better next time. If they got the grade because the teacher is using an unfair system or giving tests that are too hard, that is another issue.

    Several years ago, my middle son went from an "A" to a "D" on Reading in one grading period. When I went to ask the teacher why his grade dropped so much, she told me he had not taken any AR tests on the books he read. He read the books, but couldn't get credit until he took the test on the computer, which he had not been doing. I agreed that, in that case, he had earned the "D", but I did want to know why the teacher had not contacted his mother OR me during the entire grading period to let one of us know he as not doing his work. The teacher (perhaps feeling cornered) lied to my face and said she HAD contacted his mother several times. That took the issue to a different level because I knew she was lying and the ONLY indication we had that my son was not doing his work was when he came home with a "D" on his report card.

    Because of the lie, I went to the P about the issue. He never addressed the issue of his teacher lying to me, but we did reach a compromise on the grade that was mutually agreeable.
     
  14. callmebob

    callmebob Enthusiast

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    Did that school not have progress reports that went home in the middle of a quarter? I know not all schools use them, but that is how I inform parents of how their child is doing part way through a quarter.
     
  15. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Enthusiast

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    I have to knock on wood. My kids are good students. I don't ever really have to worry about grades. I get an email when they have a paper or test below a 70. I only worry if I get a couple in a row from the same teacher. For the two in college, they are doing well. They both know they need to keep their GPA up or loose scholarship money which means that it will take longer to get through college.
     
  16. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    I am old school. My son when he didn't get good grades he was grounded, Period! If He let me help him the time was reduced.
    It was a way to see what his teachers were teaching.
    At parent teacher conferences I would tell his teacher that I was a teacher at the end of the conference (he never wanted his teacher's know his dad was one of them).
     
  17. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Jul 21, 2011

    The last time he got a bad grade was in the middle of first quarter in sixth grade on his progress report. Apparently he had decided to try something new. I chased him around the house with a spatula; I was that angry. When I calmed down and realized I was acting foolish, I took a good look at the report card. It had "modified" beside the grade. I called the school and made an appointment.

    So here is the kicker. I meet with them, and they kept giving me comments about doing the best he can under the circumstances, and I'm having a fit. "What circumstances?" And they're looking at each other like who is going to say it.

    Finally one brave sole says, "You know children with his IQ have a hard time in the regular classroom. You might want to reconsider and have him get special ed help."

    What? What?!!!!!! Have you read his records? Are we talking about the same child here???!!!! Go get his permanent file, now!
    These idiots had never looked at it; they just assumed my son was telling the truth when he said that he was really special ed but his "mommy" wouldn't let him be in that class. What????? Take a good look at his test scores from last year. (All very high.) This child has been pulling one over on you.

    It turns out that my very bright child had figured out that he wouldn't have to work very hard if he said that. These teachers were idiots. I thought everything had been going fine for 4 weeks since I hadn't heard a word and he was doing his homework.

    He is very bright. He just has no fear. The good news is that he didn't keep it up. As a matter of fact, he's back in college for his second degree and has straight A's. But I'll tell you, I learned to keep on my toes with him. I always called all of his teachers after that about 3 weeks into school to see how things were going.

    Luckily, he never found a group of teachers that idiotic again.
     
  18. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

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    Jul 21, 2011

    Sounds like my son :rofl: :toofunny:
     

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