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? about a perfectionist child

Posted by on Apr. 24, 2013 at 7:12 PM
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Hi! I am new here :) I really love this group - I have learned so much so far. 28 more days of public school for my daughters and then I will homeschool them. I am very excited and nervous but more importantly I am content with my decision. I am working on the organizational aspect of homeschool because I am not an organized person. I would appreciate any tips anyone may have. Another issue that I am having right now is how upset my 7 year old becomes when she can't do something completely right the 1st time. If a test or worksheet from school doesn't have an 100% on it she gets upset. If she tries to sing a song and says the wrong word she gets upset. She retreats to her room and pouts and cries. It breaks my heart. I don't tell her she needs to have perfect or even good grades, I just tell her to try her best. She is just naturally hard on herself and has more of a pessimistic attitude. So, when we start homeschooling how should I respond to her work? Do I give grades? I want her to enjoy learning and not think she should be the best. Will she outgrow this since she is not "competing" with classmates? Thanks for any advice :)

by on Apr. 24, 2013 at 7:12 PM
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wendythewriter
by Helping Hands on Apr. 24, 2013 at 7:41 PM
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I don't give my kids actual grades. When they get to high school, I suppose I may have to, but right nowi  don't. I just check over their work, and if they get something wrong, I handle it one of two ways:

1. If I think they honestly didn't understand, I go over it with them again, working through it with them to correct it.

2. If it's pure laziness, and I know that they simply rushed through and didn't make any effort, I call them out on it. I mark it wrong and tell them to fix it.

DyslexiaParent
by Welcome Squad on Apr. 24, 2013 at 9:00 PM
1 mom liked this

It is helpful to look over the work and not grade it, but rather to look for gaps in understanding and to look upon the errors as a need to re-teach so the child can learn.  For us, we just never moved forward until my children understood the concept/content.  That said, we did not do a bunch of memorization of facts that they could look up at any time they may need to know in the future.  For example, it was much more important for my kids to know who Martin Luther King, Jr. was, his ideals, his efforts, etc. rather than where he was born, the date of his birth, the date of the march, etc.  Thus, it was easier for our kids to be "right" if they understood the bigger picture.   Math.. Well, that was a bit more difficult because we needed to be sure the concepts were understood and most math rules were memorized.  We just continued review until mastery, and it wasn't necessary to tell the child they were "wrong".. Just that we needed to do it more and practice more.  Hope that helps!

stefpop
by Testing the waters on Apr. 24, 2013 at 9:24 PM

Thanks! I like the idea of not putting a grade at the top of the paper. I hope she eases up on herself.

Bleacheddecay
by Leader on Apr. 24, 2013 at 11:05 PM
2 moms liked this

She probably won't outgrow it unless you work with her on ways to not be a perfectionist. It's really just an individual internal thing. She will need to try behavior therapy ways to deal with it and let go of it.

celticdragon77
by on Apr. 24, 2013 at 11:25 PM
1 mom liked this

I agree with bleachdecay. 

I also will add that - I wonder if not having grades would really help long term wise. Eventually, she has to deal with the fact that we are not perfect beings. That there is honor and great character in working hard to perfect a skill. She needs to learn that patience and perseverance are vital to mastery.

As an added note - I do not use grades. It seems a little pointless and complicated. I know how well they did, I know when more review is needed, and I do not need to express (in that manner) how well they are doing to anyone else. My kids want to feel like they accomplished something and they like the feeling of being proud of how well they do something. I use positive feedback and stickers. I encourage pride in their work. We also have a show and tell pizza night every Friday. They get to relax, have fun, and show off their work, discuss what they learned... to the family while enjoying some pizza. - this is a practice we have had in place for a long time. Whether homeschooling or in public school. 

"live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air..." Emerson 

wendythewriter
by Helping Hands on Apr. 25, 2013 at 7:37 AM
1 mom liked this

I agree that she has to learn these things, but how does grades help? When have you ever been graded with A through F in the workplace? I never have. You get feedback in the form of a yearly review where they tell you that you are not working up to standards, at standard, above, etc. Or you get feedback in the form of being told to add to a project, that this letter isn't really what they wanted, etc.

So, as long as you're looking over the work and helping the child understand where they went wrong, correct their mistakes and ensure they understand something before they move on, grades really aren't necessary.

To me, the only purpose of a grade is for some outside person (whether a teacher/administrator at a school, a college, or an evaluator) to be able to quickly flip through and determine progress and that the child is learning. You're there with your child, so the quick determination isn't necessary.


Quoting celticdragon77:


I also will add that - I wonder if not having grades would really help long term wise. Eventually, she has to deal with the fact that we are not perfect beings. That there is honor and great character in working hard to perfect a skill. She needs to learn that patience and perseverance are vital to mastery.

celticdragon77
by on Apr. 25, 2013 at 8:36 AM
You took only one paragraph to quote. What I wrote in its entirety is much in line with what you are saying here.
Quoting wendythewriter:

I agree that she has to learn these things, but how does grades help? When have you ever been graded with A through F in the workplace? I never have. You get feedback in the form of a yearly review where they tell you that you are not working up to standards, at standard, above, etc. Or you get feedback in the form of being told to add to a project, that this letter isn't really what they wanted, etc.

So, as long as you're looking over the work and helping the child understand where they went wrong, correct their mistakes and ensure they understand something before they move on, grades really aren't necessary.

To me, the only purpose of a grade is for some outside person (whether a teacher/administrator at a school, a college, or an evaluator) to be able to quickly flip through and determine progress and that the child is learning. You're there with your child, so the quick determination isn't necessary.


Quoting celticdragon77:


I also will add that - I wonder if not having grades would really help long term wise. Eventually, she has to deal with the fact that we are not perfect beings. That there is honor and great character in working hard to perfect a skill. She needs to learn that patience and perseverance are vital to mastery.

Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air... - Emerson  

wendythewriter
by Helping Hands on Apr. 25, 2013 at 10:18 AM

I took only one paragraph because it was the only one I was addressing. I saw no need to have everything you said repeated to address one paragraph.


Quoting celticdragon77:

You took only one paragraph to quote. What I wrote in its entirety is much in line with what you are saying here.
Quoting wendythewriter:

I agree that she has to learn these things, but how does grades help? When have you ever been graded with A through F in the workplace? I never have. You get feedback in the form of a yearly review where they tell you that you are not working up to standards, at standard, above, etc. Or you get feedback in the form of being told to add to a project, that this letter isn't really what they wanted, etc.

So, as long as you're looking over the work and helping the child understand where they went wrong, correct their mistakes and ensure they understand something before they move on, grades really aren't necessary.

To me, the only purpose of a grade is for some outside person (whether a teacher/administrator at a school, a college, or an evaluator) to be able to quickly flip through and determine progress and that the child is learning. You're there with your child, so the quick determination isn't necessary.


Quoting celticdragon77:


I also will add that - I wonder if not having grades would really help long term wise. Eventually, she has to deal with the fact that we are not perfect beings. That there is honor and great character in working hard to perfect a skill. She needs to learn that patience and perseverance are vital to mastery.



debramommyof4
by Helping Hands on Apr. 25, 2013 at 11:07 AM
1 mom liked this

 When my now 7 year old did this in k we celebrated her mistakes.  We told her what a good job she was doing, because she was doing her best.  We went on and on about how proud we where of her.  She tested us and did not do her best for a bit but I was patient and she did get over it.  She was better at not being so upset.

celticdragon77
by on Apr. 25, 2013 at 4:14 PM
Im not sure that I understand what you were doing here, or if what you did was in discussion with me. It seems to repeat what I said (in your own words), but it's all good.
Quoting wendythewriter:

I took only one paragraph because it was the only one I was addressing. I saw no need to have everything you said repeated to address one paragraph.


Quoting celticdragon77:

You took only one paragraph to quote. What I wrote in its entirety is much in line with what you are saying here.
Quoting wendythewriter:

I agree that she has to learn these things, but how does grades help? When have you ever been graded with A through F in the workplace? I never have. You get feedback in the form of a yearly review where they tell you that you are not working up to standards, at standard, above, etc. Or you get feedback in the form of being told to add to a project, that this letter isn't really what they wanted, etc.

So, as long as you're looking over the work and helping the child understand where they went wrong, correct their mistakes and ensure they understand something before they move on, grades really aren't necessary.

To me, the only purpose of a grade is for some outside person (whether a teacher/administrator at a school, a college, or an evaluator) to be able to quickly flip through and determine progress and that the child is learning. You're there with your child, so the quick determination isn't necessary.


Quoting celticdragon77:


I also will add that - I wonder if not having grades would really help long term wise. Eventually, she has to deal with the fact that we are not perfect beings. That there is honor and great character in working hard to perfect a skill. She needs to learn that patience and perseverance are vital to mastery.



Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air... - Emerson  

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