30 October 2005

Worry for naught, at least in one case

Lately, I have been stressing out over M's schoolwork. In the past she has had trouble keeping up with her assignments. She can do the work, but little things trip her up like forgetting to write down the assignment or only bringing home half of the materials. ABM and I thought that she was off to a better start this year, until we got a call from one of her teachers saying that M will get an F for this term if she doesn't turn in several missing assignments. Just when we got that cleared up, I came home to find that she had after-school detention for missing assignments in another class.

While we were in the midst of dealing with M's mess, I found a reading test from the end of last school year that showed C2's reading level was below average. I remember seeing this test but somehow I blocked it out of my mind. So I've spent the past week flagellating myself up for being a bad mother and wondering what will become of C2 if her reading doesn't improve. I started thinking back to all those times when it took her twice as long as C1 to finish the same homework and wishing I had helped her more. I envisioned the poor kid being stuck in dead-end jobs just like her parents.

All that worry over C2 in the past week seems a little foolish now. I just finished looking over the stack of graded assignments that her teacher sent home, and the majority of the grades were between 90 and 100. These were math, science, and language arts papers. The worst thing I could find was her handwriting. I'm still going to bring up my concerns to her teacher on 10 Nov at the parent/teacher conference, but I'm beginning to feel that I blew things out of proportion. As for M, I'm holding out hope that if I present an example of an organized person it will benefit us both.

Friends with children in the same age group have suggested that I have both girls tested for ADD. I have an irrational resistance to that suggestion. I've seen people use ADD/ADHD as an excuse for why they can't do something or as a reason for why their kids should get special treatment. Also, I have to admit that I like having low-maintenance kids. We don't have to worry about medications or special diets; God knew what he was doing when he gave me "normal" kids. Still, if the teachers recommend that I have them tested I will do what is best for them.
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