How Sad! (a love and logic phrase - used often to show empathy). I have had the luxury (thanks to a good husband) of taking 2 classes over the past 8 weeks. I have been gone a lot. I took the Love and Logic parenting class and a gardening class. It was cool too and I hope by the end of summer that I have something to show for it. We'll see...
But I will definitely miss my parenting class the most. I love the class and the teacher. It was probably my favorite 2 hours of the week. To me - the principles and ideas taught in Love and Logic make sense. I just have to re-wire my brain to put them into action. It definitely takes a lot of practice. But it is so worth it. So if you want to take the class and you live in the area - it starts this Thursday night. You can register here. I highly recommend both parents taking it but that doesn't always work, I know.
The last class we talked about success at school. It was so interesting. I am lucky because I have kids who are so far doing very well. And we haven't yet hit any major battles regarding homework or school in general. But I learned some very interesting ideas. One of them is to focus on the things they get right. She called it the 10 Second Magic Trick. Have your child bring you a recent test or assignment. Pick one thing they got right. And say, "Wow. Look at that. I bet it feels good to get that right. How did you do that?" And wait for an answer. "Did you try something new?" "Did you work really hard?" Don't even mention or acknowledge that they got any other answers wrong (or maybe all the others wrong). She said she uses this technique on ANYTHING her kids do. For example - in soccer. "That goal you scored was great. I bet that you feel so good. How did you do that?" Rather than having the focus being on how we feel about their accomplishments we help them recognize the feelings they get with success. Then you help them recognize what THEY did to make it happen. It will help them to use that knowledge to repeat the success. (try it on chores, practicing, interacting with siblings, sports, hobbies, etc)
Every human is born with the natural instinct to learn. When we have that "aha" moment where we figure out something, that is the brain sending out a reward to the body for learning. We want our children to look for that rather than some external reward for learning. That feeling will keep them motivated to learn and succeed.
I have to admit that this concept is the very opposite of what I do. I expect so much from my kids that when they bring home their spelling tests with 90% correct, I immediately review the ones they got wrong and focus in out the mistakes. HOW RUDE! Who does that? That must be the worst feeling. I am happy that they got 90% but I often feel like they get lazy and fall short of doing their best.
Anyway - give it at try! I am working on this. I have already caught myself and had to start over.