Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Grades Are Important

Beth used to be a good student. She got good grades, and then came 8th grade. Suddenly she was barely passing some of her classes. Did my smart daughter suddenly become dumb? Did the schoolwork between 7th and 8th grade suddenly get harder? Her teachers all believed she could do much better, but she didn't seem to want to put forth any effort. Having friends and being popular seemed to be more important than doing her schoolwork. Every time we offered to help her, she made it clear that she did not want our help. Now I'm thinking that we probably should have done more. We kept trying to come up with the right incentive to get her to work harder, like the need for good grades so she could drive. That didn't work. Maybe we should have found her an innovative tutor who could have helped her, someone who could have made learning fun and engaging, something.

She's got two more years of high school. Maybe it's not too late. If only she could get excited about something besides hanging out with her friends. What about the rest of her life? We just can't convince her that what she does now will affect what she can do for the rest of her life.