Thursday, January 31, 2013

Great Expectations

"Hooray! You got all A's!"
"Hooray! You got all C's!"
"Hooray! You got every letter in the alphabet!"

Yes, I could say these exact words on any given day after school. And mean them all. If I have learned anything in the past 13+ years is that ALL kids are different. Different abilities, different personalities, different everything. So we must have different expectations for each.

I expect one of the 4 sons to get mostly A's. School work has always come easily for him. I expect the one who has to study for every single point he earns might still bomb a test. And I expect the one who is not that into this whole school, studying, non-playing outside deal to need a little more nudging from every angle just to get his work done. And I expect Number 4, the cutest 5 year old in the world, to continue to like Kindergarten just fine!

One loves to read. One doesn't mind reading. And a couple still like for me to read to them. Math is easy for one. Harder for another. Looks like some of you are in a similar boat.

Our expectations are that they do their best. When they were younger we explained to them that that might mean they have different grade since we only expected them to do the best they can with the gifts God gave them. And since we are all unique creations of God that could look differently for each of them.

When it comes to grades,no. Our expectations are that they try their best always and take pride in their work. Each child is different and learns in their own unique ways. As parents we should foster their learning capabilities and help them flourish drawing out their strengths and helping ad encouraging growth in their weaknesses. For us the older ones excel academically but have problems with basic problem solving skills because they've never had to work very hard for their grades. Growing up I had to work hard for each of my grades and my sister did not, but my parents still expected our best from both of us.

That is a good question. Yes to all of the above, but realistically, we have one who is smarter than his brother. The brother will be an artist (if you catch my meaning). One is going to sail through school the other will struggle. Yes, we encourage them to do their best and to not make below B's. Realistically, we just want them to enjoy learning and not hate school. I talk to each kid differently. I help each kid differently, but I try to have similar expectations.

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