Starting school with high expectations!
Last month I heard so much about Back to School! Then it was about Picture Day! And today I ordered the Year Book School for my son who is in 7th grade.
This is a big deal! School getting started!
And I believe it is also a big deal for us the parents!
Especially for our time management, with all the hustle with the drop-offs, pickups, lunch boxes, sports, everything!!!
Well, this year I talked to my son, and told him that we need to have a conversation, setting the goals for the year… I asked him what will be the big goal for the year.
He answered me: “Have all A’s”!!
This answer hit my heart!
Did I tell him that?… no… I didn’t!
So I explained to him that it wasn’t the most important thing, it was important that he become independent and capable to manage his time among school, sports, chores at home and free time.
The grades will be a result of his hard work, as he is a smart kid so it will be easy to get the good grades! Easy for me saying this as he is being a straight-A student.
Well, just after 3 weeks the school get started, my son had for the first time an F and a C, all at the same time!
WHAT?? What is going on?
I am feeling terrible! He can’t have an F in 7th grade.
I am feeling it is more frustrated for me than to him… he is telling me he will get back up, to don’t worry! Seeing this in perspective, it is a great opportunity to learn from mistakes, but I am learning it is needed to set the ground rules and very clear guidance! Being independent doesn’t mean without rules! Learning from failures only make sense if you want to get better, and take action!
Then I was thinking, what is the measure I can take for his work at school?
So I am back to grades… it is the easiest way to measure his results, and to arrive there he needs hard work and organization. So this year’s goal for him is to be capable to organize his time independently and put the effort in tasks that add value for him.
Goals adjusted after 3 weeks from the first round of setting it up!
Talking to some other moms, I understand it is different for each child, for example, talking about myself, I was very dedicated to school, and loved the beginning of the year, all the new school material, the smell of the notebooks, and when school was starting I had already everything labeled and had looked to the subjects for each class. I was asking myself if I had someone telling to do it… and no I hadn’t!
Then comparing to my husband, he was a bit more disorganized and didn’t have everything ready for school, but always good grades…
My biggest learning in this mix of feelings from the last couple of weeks, is we need to adapt to our children, each child is different, and for the same end goal, there are different paths. Whatever it works for each family, children and teenagers need very clear rules and guidance.
It is not enough if I say he needs to be organized, because he may don’t understand what is this means. And this makes all difference in how I talk to him.
So I am taking the time, to let him know what an organized backpack looks like, a closet, his desk, his soccer bag… he is 12 and he should know, right?! Then I realize…until now it was mommy doing it for him!
I believe this is about to make him accountable and responsible for his own stuff, and this is what is important in life. And these are the growing pains… it is hard now, but it will be a blessing in the future.
I hope I can teach one of the most important lessons in life to my son: work ethic.