Sometimes we can see the visible signs that our child is struggling at school. Sometimes……..you can’t! Sometimes they are so fantastic at hiding their struggles it makes it really difficult for parents to pick up that their child may need additional help!
So when do you know if your child needs tutoring? Usually, the first indication to home that a child is struggling comes in the mid-year and end-of-year reports. By that time, our children often have been so battered, bruised and stressed that they default to the fixed mind-set of “I can’t”. Once they reach that territory……..it can be extremely difficult to steer the ship back to the shore and turn off all of it’s “sinking” mechanisms.
In comes my top 5 signs that your child may need a tutor! Some of these, you may have already seen, some of them may be difficult to find. When children (and adults) find things difficult and stressful, they can become experts at hiding it!
Feeling sick when it is time to head to school – unless there is an underlying medical issue (make sure you get it checked out), often the “feeling sick” draw card is used because the child feels safer in bed, at home, where difficulties they may encounter at school are not on display!
Refusal to complete homework, or constantly “losing” homework – it can be a major battle to get our children to complete their homework, but what if it is only Maths they refuse to do? Children refuse to do things for a reason (unless it is doing the dishes, taking out the rubbish or cleaning their rooms!) If there is a particular subject that your child just refuses to do homework for, it may be time to investigate why!
Throwing tantrums after school or on the way to school – maybe the child is just tired, or maybe, they have been stressed out ALL DAY and this is the only way they can release that pressure. Often, as much as our little one’s (and big one’s) are articulate and can tell us what is wrong or what has happened, when it comes to learning, they may not be sure what is frustrating them. Or, it could be everything. The tantrum can be a MASSIVE indicator that something else is happening.
Anger directed at themselves – this can go hand in hand with tantrums, but often can be seen separately. Some children get angry, and I mean, REALLY angry at themselves. You may watch them doing some homework and all of a sudden they yell at themselves, or grip the pencil tighter, scrunch it up, scribble all over it etc etc. The outburst may be completely out of character and they may begin “hating” themselves, calling themselves stupid, dumb or hopeless. This may be the first time you see the outburst, but it will definitely NOT be the first time that they have felt this way!
Complete loss of confidence, even in things that they love doing – when you get hit down over and over again, and you feel like you will never grasp an idea, concept, formula, your confidence takes the hit! Again, this may not occur over night, but if your child is really struggling with things, the loss of confidence will be noticed, often when they are at breaking point.
There are another hundred things that you may notice. Often, the report comments and grades may be the first indication of an issue. This may be a sudden drop in grade or it may be a sustained lower grade. There are so many people out there that are available to help your child, it is just a matter of finding the right fit! Look out for my next blog on how to find that perfect match!
Image courtesy of Master isolated images at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
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