Helllo, It has been all uphill with my 13 yo son this year. He is simply not interested. It is very difficult to get his attention. Although he used to be able to do quite a bit of work independently, this year he can do very little without my hand-holding. Math is particularly challenging and none of it is sinking in, He would rather be digging, playing or watching basketball or playing drums. I have other children I need to work with, but by the time I "drag" my 13 yo through his morning lessons I have no time left. Just looking for some thoughts.
13 yo Son isn't engaged(6 posts) (3 voices)
This is often a difficult age. Sometimes when our children are going through many physical changes whether that is a growth spurt or puberty, their learning abilities will plateau for a bit while their energy is being directed into physical growth. That's not an excuse to be lazy, just something to keep in mind to help you have patience through this stage.
I would say that you (and your husband if possible) need to come up with some clear expectations for your son at this time and then talk to him together. It is so important that this talk has a tone of encouragement, being on the same team, you're here to help him through this hurdle, this is a temporary glitch that you're all going to work through together, etc. And then, as I said, set some clear expectations. Lower the bar temporarily if necessary so that your son will be able to achieve the goals.
Then, have clear consequences as well for not being diligent with his work. Definitely no screen time until all his work is completed satisfactorily! If that means he never watches basketball again, so be it.
In my opinion, the key to this working will be your attitude in all this. As moms we are so wrapped up emotionally in our children, that it's hard to not take responsibilitiy for your son's apathy and it's difficult not to take it all personally. (I have soooo been there.) Make sure your tone is of encouragment, set clear expectations and clear consequences and then you are done. Do not engage. Refuse to listen to whining, or arguing, or manipulating. (Excuse me if I do your son a disservice by suggesting that he would manipulate or whine, but most of mine would!) Certainly help him if he genuinely requires help, but it is not your job to "drag" him through anything.
Jean, mom to ten from 7 - 31, 20th year of homeschooling!
IF this is a double-post my apologies. My first post just vanished. Jean, thank you for your good words. Yes, my attitude needs a lot of work, because we've been in this pit since last summer. He's falling woefully behind in math and his other subjects and it has become a major source of frustaton for me. All I'm seeing at present is a long road ahead and no end in sight. We've already banished him from team sports until there's a turnaround. He knows what he has to do. I'm just wondering when or if he'll do it.
I have a 13yo myself and will pray for your son.
My ds is going through some major growth spurts as well (eating like crazy, growing taller everyday, skin changes) and I'm not quite used to his sleeping in (totally bugs me, but I know he needs it). We are really trying to work with him to get through these changes, and want to be here for him (as it can't be easy on him either).
I don't really have any advice, but wanted to encourage you and let you know you (and your son) are not alone.
My 3 boys I kwym about the sleeping in. It is so odd to see a child who only a year ago was rising early to fish and hike, now sleep-in and want to stay up late. We went through this in a different-way with our older son who is now an absolute delight, BUT it's not any easier the 2nd time around. He's a regular porcupine.
Jean and my3 boys, Thank you both again for posting. I just came in after having dropped the 13 yo off at a birthday party and as I was standing there a mother walked up to me who I hadn't seen in several years and said, "Your son is so MANLY." And I was reminded in those words, just how much he has going on. Today was a very good day for both of us. He did yard work for a neighbor, helped his dad stack wood, took care of his math and he had a good attitude. All worth celebrating. Thank you again for your prayers and thoughts.
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