My nine year old hates school and shows no motivation. What should I do? I'm a single mom and I can't ask his dad for help


Sarah - posted on 11/30/2012




Why is school not interesting to him? Is it too easy or hard? Is he being bullied or maybe he isn't sitting somewhere in the classroom that allows him to see. If he is sitting in the back and can't see he could need reading glasses (of course if you have had this checked already, then ignore me). My step son was not interested in school when he moved in with me and my hubby a year ago. He was failing every class at his old school. He didn't care and was running with a bad group of kids that were often bullying other, starting fights, talking in class and just being plain disruptive. He switched school when he moved in with us, which I think helped a lot. His dad was on his grades like white on rice. If he got below a C he would be grounded until it was a C. This was the first semester he was with us. When school started this year, his expectation was to have an 85% or higher or he would be grounded. His first 9 weeks he was a straight A student. We decided to allow him to keep track himself and keep his grades up without us micromanaging. He has slipped a little, but he knows it and he is working on bringing them back up. His groundings include on electronics or TV. He can read a book, but can't sleep his day away. He also is not allowed to do "fun" stuff. He is really involved in his youth group at Church. We took away the fun day and allowed him to go to the not so fun day. He couldn't hang out with friends or anything. He got this punishment once and he didn't want it again. Let me tell you it was the worst week of my life. He was moody and mean and mad. He thought if he through his tantrum and made me and his dad miserable he would gain access to the things he liked. He didn't and we learned to ignore it after about 3 days. He now knows we won't give in and he knows the expectation. I would tell your son that he must keep a certain grade. Make it realistic and don't set the goal too high at first. Start this expectation when he goes back to school after Christmas. Tell him what the consequence of not keeping that expectation will be. If he doesn't meet said expectation then follow through with the consequence and don't go back on it because he is being moody. It is hard when there are two of us, so I can imagine it will be harder for you being by yourself, but with clear boundaries set, you will have more impact on him. Also, check with his teachers and the councilor and principal to see if there is anything going on at school that he hasn't or won't tell you about. You may be surprised by what you learn.

1 Comment

View replies by

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms