I get more referrals during the first 3 months of the year than any other time of the year and the majority of them are academically related. In fact, teachers will tell you, their cirriculum is loaded with new material during this time; and, it’s the most opportune time to teach because there are few holiday interruptions. Students experience an increased academic load, a more rapid pace of teaching, and the teacher’s expect more from their students. The consequence for many students is the WINTER TIME SCHOOL BLUES. The kids who demonstrated minimal to moderate problems during the first few months of school begin to have increased problems in January,February, and early March. Academic problems become increasingly more serious and the stress levels for the child, parent, and teachers mount. If you did not get support for your child at the beginning of the school year, intervene now!
1. Be proactive-do not wait to hear from the school, especially if you are concerned. Trust your own judgement and get involved.
2. Be an advocate-if your child is having academic problems, she or he needs your guidance and support in order to help foster a positive teacher-student experience that focuses on your child’s learning style. Do not demonize the teacher and do not do your child’s work.
3. Get your child a tutor- tutors are excellent resources in helping your child learn to master a subject area he or she is having problems with. Also, a tutor often acts as a positive buffer between you and your child and helps minimize the stress between parent and child.
4. Be persistent and follow through. The problems are not solved within a week. Remember, if your child experiences the WINTER TIME SCHOOL BLUES one year, it is likely to recur another year.