When a child is having trouble at school, it’s beneficial to intervene as soon as possible. But how can you tell if they are having a hard time? Children, especially teenagers, aren’t always open with their parents about struggles with school.
It can be hard to determine how your child is doing in school, but there are some ways to assess how they’re feeling. Read through these warning signs your child is struggling in school.
Change in Attitude
If you notice that your child’s attitude toward school has recently shifted, that can be a sign that something is wrong. Becoming angry or even bored with school are common traits among students who are struggling academically.
If your child tells you that they are bored at school, it could mean that they don’t understand the material or that the subject matter isn’t challenging enough. But what if your child isn’t able to articulate why they’re bored? You can start by reviewing recent assessments to see what score they received; this should tell you whether they understood the information or not. Schools use assessments all the time, including gifted child testing, but homeschool parents will have to invest in those themselves.
Paying attention to any shifting attitudes toward schoolwork can help you spot a problem even before an assessment test. Nonetheless, you’ll need to dig a little deeper to see what’s causing the shift in behavior.
Trouble Sleeping or Eating
Anxiety and worry can affect how your child is sleeping or eating. If they are having trouble keeping up with schoolwork or understanding a subject, they could have trouble falling or staying asleep. The worry of failing a class or simply not keeping up with expectations from teachers or parents can be affecting their daily life in multiple ways.
Talk to your child about how you can help them with a challenging class and check-in with yourself to see if you’re putting undue pressure on them.
Typically, a student is assigned ten minutes of homework per grade level every night. So, if your second grader is spending an hour on what should only be 20 minutes of homework, this is a clear sign they are struggling. Of course, homework policies vary by school, but observing your child as they work on their homework can help you determine whether they are struggling.
These are just a few warning signs your child is struggling in school, but they are a great starting point for determining if your child needs help. Of course, anyone can have an off day, but if you notice these behaviors occurring regularly, you should take action and talk to your child about what you can do to help. The sooner you step in, the better off they will be.