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Academic Loss

Hey everyone!

I know that you haven’t heard from me a long time, but as usual I have been so busy!  I now have a space where I can be creative and have been spending a lot of time making it pretty and I have also started having classes there too!

This post it not one of my usual post, in which I talk about decorating, sewing, or being creative.  I wanted to talk about something I have noticed with this new generation that really concerns me.  As you may know I have 3 children of my own, 14, 12, and 3.  This was the first year that allowed my 12 year old to not go to summer camp.  Being that I was a teacher in the past, her school gave her a packet that included all of the academic skills that she is taught throughout the year, and also that I purchased the full program from IXL (more info on this later) I thought, “hey this should keep her occupied”.  I even thought it would give us an opportunity to spend some time together, especially since I have the new sewing space.

In order for me to accomplish a task I have to organize it in my mind first and then on paper.  If it’s not on paper, then it’s no good to me.  So I sat down with my chick-a-dee and said lets create a schedule for you, I mean I love a planner, who doesn’t.  We created a schedule and everything seemed good.  She would do IXL for an hour, work on one of her packets, and help me at the sewing studio.  This schedule lasted for about 3 weeks and then IT. ALL. WENT. DOWN. HILL…..

I started to notice her laziness (do you all have this same issue with your kids), which grinds my gears because I am not lazy.  She wanted to sleep all day, not get out of the bed and when she did she had an attitude about doing her work.  Being the kind of mother I am, I usually snap when this occurs, but since she getting older I try to talk things over with her.  After our talk she said that she would fix this issue and work harder.  I would look at her packets and it looked like chicken scratch! I made her do the packets over and then as I read over her work it was ALL WRONG!!

Let me make this disclosure statement, “I am kind of a scatter brain, I will talk about 7 topics in 5 minutes, and I am ALWAYS multitasking”, but with that being said I can get the job done efficiently and correctly. Even when I multitask I am focused on the current task that my hands are on to make sure it’s right.

Spending this summer with my chick-a-dee I noticed that she has the same issue, she is a scatter brain, but she can not multitask.  So although 50 things are running through her head at the moment she can’t control them so that she can focus on the item at hand.  So when she is doing something that she really doesn’t want to do she can’t dismiss those thoughts nor can she focus.  I believe this happens in school, while she is reading, taking a test, doing homework, etc. At this point I feel like a failure not only as a mother, but a teacher.  I used teach students to grasp a concept in ways that other teachers couldn’t, but here it is my own child can’t grasp the concept.  I was starting to consider medication to help her control her thoughts and focus.

I started doing research and learned that students lose 2-3 months of learning during the summer and this can add up over the years.  Of course I started thinking about my girl, how much is she losing, how much has she loss… Take a look at this info-graphic:

Oxford Learning Summer Learning Loss
Oxford Learning Summer Learning Loss

Now I truly haven’t come up with a solution, but I know next year that she will be in a summer program of learning and she will also be physically active, as noted by Oxford Learning.  Did you know that physical activity can lead to increased concentration and improved math and test scores?

Even though the school year has started, I noticed that she still has that slacked state of mind.  I make sure to ask her about school and her tests.  If she fails a test we go over why she failed and how she can make things better.  I also encourage her to go to coach class whenever it’s offered.  I make her practice on IXL when she has a problem with something, whether it’s math, reading, language arts, science, or social studies.  I am also in communication with her teachers and when they tell me that she is struggling I ask them what they suggest I do to help her.  For example, her language arts teacher told me she is struggling with reading comprehension and suggests that I get her books that she finds interesting so that she can read them and understand the text better.  So since reading comprehension is her struggle it is also mine.  She and I will have a book club together.  These are the first few books I have lined up:

  1. Stolen
  2. I’d Tell You I Love You, But Then I’d Have to Kill You

  3. The Giver

If you all have some more books or suggestions to assist my chick-a-dee please let me know.

THE. STRUGGLE. IS. REAL…

Thanks for listening!

P.S. IXL is an education program for K-12.  There are two types of memberships, Parent and Educator.  As a parent you can choose between three different plan for one child, one core subject, two core subjects, or 4 core subjects and they can paid for monthly or yearly.  You can also add additional children for $40 each and add Spanish for the same price.  What I love about this program is that they email you will the results of your child’s work, whether they need improvement or not.  I also love that when a problem is done incorrectly they go through the steps of how to do the problem correctly.

BTW, this information about IXL was not sponsored.  These are all my own thoughts.

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