January 26, 2010,
S.W. asks from Gilbert, AZ on January 23, 2010
8 Year Old Daughter Not Completing School Work in School
My oldest daughter who is 8 struggles with completing her "seatwork" during classtime. This is something we have been fighting all year but seems to have gotten worse in the last few months. We met with her teacher a couple months ago when this first started and created a tracking sheet that she had to have signed off on my both us and her teacher everynight. It seemed to be working so after a few months we tried not tracking it and seeing if she would self motivate herself. She did for a little while and then we are now back to it not being completed. When you ask her why she isn't completing it she doesn't have an answer or she claims the other children in the classroom are distracting her.She is smart girl and basically gets straight A's with a few B+'s here and there. Any suggestions on what could be causing this behavior? She doesn't have problems sitting still or focusing on thing that she enjoys. I just don't know what to do and am at my wits end with her. Any suggests are very much welcomed.
A.K. answers from Boston on January 23, 2010
One of my boys wasn't always getting his classwork done either. He was distracted by the other kids...watching someone pick their nose, see who's talking, etc. The teacher created a little spot just for him where he could sit and focus on his work and it worked like a charm! One teacher put an extra desk at the front of the room next to her desk. The other teacher gave him a seat at a table. In both situations, his back was to the rest of the classroom. These areas weren't his permanent seat, just when they were doing morning work.
I also think the teacher should be checking on her progress each day, perhaps 1/2 through the time allotted.
Hope this helps!
1 mom found this helpful
T.C. answers from Albuquerque on January 26, 2010
Your daughter's excuses don't hold water: with the tracking sheets she already proved to everyone she can work with distractions and does know the answers.
Go back to the tracking sheets for the rest of the school year. At the age of eight, she's not old enough to be 100% self-responsible; she still has to get to that developmental stage.
Don't worry, you must be doing a great job, because you are working so well hand-in-hand with her teacher (so many parents don't!) Good for you!
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M.C. answers from Washington DC on January 24, 2010
This sounds EXACTLY like my 8 yr old son! We've been battling this for 3 yrs!
He gets so concerned about what the other kids are doing and that they aren't doing what the teacher said to work on, that he then isn't doing what the teacher said!
We've tried several things.
1. had is desk moved across the room from his friend, and pointing in teh direction of the teacher.
2. Gave him a watch to wear. Asked the teacher to change the way she was giving time warnings. Instead of saying you have five more minutes, to say, you have until 10:25 to finish.
The problem still exists, but it does seem to be getting better.
L.W. answers from Phoenix on January 25, 2010
Ourdaughter hadsomebehavioursatschol and iscapableof excellent grqades`when she desires to. We created "Ketty Bucks" dollar denominations with her picture in the center of them. For desired behaviours shewoulod receive them from not only usbut the teacher as well. At the end of thesemester we would trade the bucks foractivities shewanted most instead of food ormoney gifts. ITwas a great boost for her.
Also we used wax paperfor stapled together sticker books. All day long at school her teacher gave stickers for positive
behaviours. She stil has her sticker booksin the 5th grade.
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L.G. answers from Phoenix on January 24, 2010
Thsi is the time to get her responsible. by 5th grade the focus is on organization and 6th grade is time management. she needs to have a time to socialize after class so she is not distracted in class. a team, a sport,an art class or something multiple times a week(possibly with the kids in her class). i know it is hard to imagine that more activities and commitments can acheive this (and it is hard for the parent to schlep the kid to these activities) but it works. The child enjoys the activity and uses it as a goal (eventually) to get other things done at the alotted time and stay focused. Helps with responsibility, time management, and just growing up.
M.M. answers from Jacksonville on January 23, 2010
We had a system in K-2nd that if my son finished his work and was well behaved he got a smiley face for the day from the teacher. We started with a smiley in the AM and then one in the PM. If he brought home smileys then he got chocolate milk for dinner. When he didn't get his smiley I stuck to my guns and no chocolate milk. This worked for a long time.
Is she being challenged or is the work too easy? Maybe she needs something that isn't so boring. Also a different seat somewhere else away form distractions may help too.