School Survival

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For Parents: My kid hates school, what do I do?

So, you’re here because your kid hates school. And I mean really hates it. It's more than just groaning and grumbling - it's a deep, visceral dread that you can see in their eyes every morning. It’s hard, isn’t it? Watching your kid suffer like that, feeling powerless to help. You want to do something, anything, to make it better, but you’re not sure where to start. And you’re scared. Scared of making the wrong decision, of messing things up even more.

First, take a deep breath. It’s okay to feel lost and overwhelmed. This is tough. You’re navigating uncharted waters, and it’s perfectly normal to feel like you’re barely keeping your head above the surface. The important thing is that you’re here, looking for answers, wanting to help your kid. That’s a big step, and it means a lot.

Start by listening. Really listening. Sit down with your kid in a quiet, safe space and ask them to tell you what’s going on. Why do they hate school? What are the specific things that make it unbearable? Is it the classes, the teachers, the other kids, the workload, or something else entirely? Let them talk without interrupting, without jumping in with solutions or dismissing their feelings. Just listen. Sometimes, kids need to feel heard and understood before they can even begin to think about finding a solution.

Once you have a clearer picture of what’s causing their distress, you can start exploring options together. There are more alternatives to traditional schooling than you might realize. Homeschooling, unschooling, democratic schools, charter schools, early college, online education—the list goes on. Each option has its pros and cons, and what works for one kid might not work for another. The key is to find a path that aligns with your kid’s needs, interests, and learning style.

Consider seeking out resources and communities that can offer support and guidance. There are plenty of parents who have been in your shoes and can share their experiences and advice. Websites like School Survival provide a wealth of information on alternative education and can be a great starting point. You don’t have to figure this out on your own.

Remember, this isn’t just about academics. Your kid’s mental and emotional well-being is just as important, if not more so. If school is causing them significant stress and unhappiness, it’s okay to prioritize their health over traditional educational milestones. They can catch up on math and science later. Right now, focus on helping them feel safe, understood, and supported.

It’s also important to check in with yourself. How are you feeling about all this? Are you feeling scared, frustrated, guilty, confused? Give yourself permission to feel those feelings. This is a challenging situation, and it’s okay to not have all the answers. You’re doing the best you can with the information and resources you have, and that’s enough.

Lastly, keep the lines of communication open. This is an ongoing process, and things might not improve overnight. Be patient with your kid and with yourself. Keep talking, keep listening, and keep exploring options together. Your kid needs to know that you’re on their side, that you’re willing to fight for their happiness and well-being.

You’re not alone in this. There’s a whole community of parents and kids out there who understand what you’re going through. Lean on them, learn from them, and take it one step at a time. You’ll find your way through this. Together.

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Posted in: For Parents, Knowledgebase on May 29, 2024 @ 8:13 PM

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