The Borten Institute
This was me in 8th grade. I was well rounded, well behaved, and even took honor classes in Reading. However, you would never know by looking at this picture, the countless hours I spent staring frustrated at math homework or the anxiety induced nausea I felt walking into math class every day.
As I matriculated through high school, my math teachers would give me passing grades on math work I was not able to do. Primarily because they saw me trying and wanted to reward my effort. But that did not help me once in college algebra. I had to take the remedial course 3 times!! I never mastered the prerequisite skills in math because I did not have to! I was given passing grades by caring teachers who thought they were doing the right thing.
Is this your child’s story? Do you feel your child is getting passing grades, on skills they do not know how to do?
One tip on how to address this is to talk to your child’s teacher. Believe it or not, teachers form a special bond with their students. They see your child’s potential, they know your child has been working hard, and they just want to help. But, sometimes “helping” to pass students does more harm than good. Have an honest and open conversation with your child’s teacher about grading them based on their true ability.
Another tip would be to reevaluate your expectations. If you feel your child is receiving grades they did not earn, make sure you understand what skill is be graded. For example, if a first-grade student takes a spelling test and writes
instead of “sat”, a teacher may give full credit for this attempt. That is because developmentally letter reversals are common up thru 2nd grade. Teachers tend to not penalize children for underdeveloped skills. Reevaluating your expectations, may help ease your concerns, about the accuracy of your child’s grades.