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How to motivate son?

 
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cmo22
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Joined: 26 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2015 11:17 am    Post subject: How to motivate son? Reply with quote

So I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed. I withdrew my 7.5 year old from second grade public school roughly six weeks ago, just before Christmas break. I figured that would give us a little time to "deschool" and we could begin somewhere around February. During our "deschooling" time my son didn't really show any new interests. He'd get the same books repeatedly at the library, didn't really care when I suggested finger painting, and just didn't seem to want to do anything in general. That's part of the reason I took him out of public- he doesn't want to do ANYTHING. He was very difficult to get out of bed in the morning, was constantly getting in trouble for talking/standing in class (his school recently did away with second recess), and I just thought that maybe a more flexible schedule and more choices would really motivate him to learn. So fast forward to last Monday when I had prepared a week's worth of material for us to learn, all separated by day of the week so he could easily find them and wouldn't be frustrated. From the first few minutes he has been fighting me every step of the way. He hates school, hates math, doesn't want to read, he has literally told me that he just doesn't want to do anything. So I let him take another week off while I tried to create a unit study around the Titanic, which he has been very interested in for a few years now. But low and behold, he doesn't want to do that either. He woke up at 9 today and argued with me for over an hour because he wanted to take a nap immediately after waking up. I also have a five month old daughter that I literally spend no time with because I am constantly trying to motivate my son. I've been trying to get her on a schedule for weeks, but can't because of this. So now I spend all day with a crabby baby and an almost eight year old who wants to lay around in his underwear all day and do nothing. He is now making houses for his pokemon out of paper bags and I so want to be excited about this, but I am in a pissy mood now from arguing all morning. *sigh* Does anyone have any advice? I'm ready to give up and haven't even begun.
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elliemaejune
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Joined: 30 Oct 2006
Posts: 622
Location: The Fireswamp

PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2015 5:29 pm    Post subject: Re: How to motivate son? Reply with quote

cmo22 wrote:
So I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed. I withdrew my 7.5 year old from second grade public school roughly six weeks ago, just before Christmas break. I figured that would give us a little time to "deschool" and we could begin somewhere around February. During our "deschooling" time my son didn't really show any new interests. He'd get the same books repeatedly at the library, didn't really care when I suggested finger painting, and just didn't seem to want to do anything in general. That's part of the reason I took him out of public- he doesn't want to do ANYTHING. He was very difficult to get out of bed in the morning, was constantly getting in trouble for talking/standing in class (his school recently did away with second recess), and I just thought that maybe a more flexible schedule and more choices would really motivate him to learn. So fast forward to last Monday when I had prepared a week's worth of material for us to learn, all separated by day of the week so he could easily find them and wouldn't be frustrated. From the first few minutes he has been fighting me every step of the way. He hates school, hates math, doesn't want to read, he has literally told me that he just doesn't want to do anything. So I let him take another week off while I tried to create a unit study around the Titanic, which he has been very interested in for a few years now. But low and behold, he doesn't want to do that either. He woke up at 9 today and argued with me for over an hour because he wanted to take a nap immediately after waking up. I also have a five month old daughter that I literally spend no time with because I am constantly trying to motivate my son. I've been trying to get her on a schedule for weeks, but can't because of this. So now I spend all day with a crabby baby and an almost eight year old who wants to lay around in his underwear all day and do nothing. He is now making houses for his pokemon out of paper bags and I so want to be excited about this, but I am in a pissy mood now from arguing all morning. *sigh* Does anyone have any advice? I'm ready to give up and haven't even begun.


Your job at this point is not to motivate him to do school work which you think is important. He's just little. He is not going to be motivated to do school work.

And he hasn't been out of school long enough to discover himself, and for you and him to learn to be together all day long, every day. It might be summer before that happens. Dr. Raymond Moore said that it can take upwards of *18 months* for a child to de-school.

At this point, my advice would be to have a daily household schedule--getting up together in the morning, having breakfast, doing morning chores, no pressure (but I'd make him get dressed, because he should). If he'll allow you, read to him some time during the day from good books, and be sure to have books available for him to read on his own *if he wants to.* When you go to the library, let him check out the same books every time if he wants to (that's why you'll read aloud to him from other books. But only read aloud; don't try to make lessons out of them.) Don't plan a whole unit study on something; just let things happen more naturally, including leaving him alone to make houses for his Pokemon. Wink

Are there any support groups where you live? Not co-ops...support groups, which might have a monthly park day (not weekly--that's too many) and a field trip or two?

Hang in there. It takes more time than you imagined for things to click.



Personally, I would
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cmo22
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2015 8:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you! After re-reading my post, I sound like an awful person! Some days he just gives me such a hard time, but I need to remember *why* we're doing this. I did set up a morning routine as personal hygiene is also something that he doesn't like to do LOL. You're absolutely right though, I think with more time away from "school" eventually he will stop pushing back at me and things will get easier. Right now anything that resembles school or learning he is trying to run away from, so I need to help him understand that school is not the same thing as learning, and learning happens whether you realize it or not. I guess one reason I am so concerned about it is because in my state (Missouri) one of the only regulations is that I have to teach 1000 hours per year. I'm afraid if we don't have a whole lot to show for it we might get in trouble? Well thank you again for taking time to reply, I will definitely be taking your advice and just relax a bit! Smile
Carrie
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elliemaejune
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Joined: 30 Oct 2006
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Location: The Fireswamp

PostPosted: Tue Jan 27, 2015 10:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

cmo22 wrote:
Thank you! After re-reading my post, I sound like an awful person! Some days he just gives me such a hard time, but I need to remember *why* we're doing this. I did set up a morning routine as personal hygiene is also something that he doesn't like to do LOL. You're absolutely right though, I think with more time away from "school" eventually he will stop pushing back at me and things will get easier. Right now anything that resembles school or learning he is trying to run away from, so I need to help him understand that school is not the same thing as learning, and learning happens whether you realize it or not. I guess one reason I am so concerned about it is because in my state (Missouri) one of the only regulations is that I have to teach 1000 hours per year. I'm afraid if we don't have a whole lot to show for it we might get in trouble? Well thank you again for taking time to reply, I will definitely be taking your advice and just relax a bit! Smile
Carrie


The chances that you will have to prove anything in MO are slim. Smile And if you ponder things, you can write down the things you do in very educational-sounding language, even if you didn't do anything that looks like school.

The way you help your ds understand that "school" and "learning" are not the same thing is not to talk about "school" at all, and don't try to do school.

John Holt and Mary Hood are excellent authors; they write about learning and not about school. It would be good for you to read their books. Smile
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cmo22
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Joined: 26 Jan 2015
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 02, 2015 2:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for your feedback! I will definitely look into those authors. As far as groups in our area, so far the only ones I've found are Christian based and I'd prefer something that's not religiously affiliated. So I'll keep searching!
Thanks again
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