My son is intelligent (yeah I know I’m his mom, so I will think his the best at wellll everything!) but the truth is he has always been in the top 7% of his class. Now he is in a new school in grade 3 and the game has slightly changed, he is still doing great but he is not acing all his subjects.
He got his results for last term this week and when I picked him up he was in tears! When I asked him what was wrong he broke down “I didn’t get any 7’s!” (7 equals 85+%) “Ok ok, wait till we get home and we’ll have a look at whats going on” he continued to sulk all the way home.
When I looked at his results at home he got 6’s in most of his subjects except for Afrikaans where he missed his 6 with 1%. I explained to him that even though there where no 7’s he is still between 10-15% above his class average which is fantastic and we are very proud of him! He reluctantly excepted my verdict but I could see he was still not very happy with his marks.
The problem is that he knows he is smart, and he knows what he is capable of. He has never brought a test home where he achieved less than 90%. Should their be mistakes he will get home and practice the the sum or word over and over. He is the type of child that does maths for fun and reads books at a faster pace than I do (this is saying a lot as I’m a complete and utter bookworm). He expects nothing but the best from himself.
So we had a meeting with his teacher the following day, I stepped in with strict instructions to find out what went wrong (from Tris’s point of view something had to have gone wrong!). His teacher is an elderly lady and very strict, just like Tris likes them (he gets highly upset when the class is unruly). Before I could say or ask anything she informs me that Tris was marked down due to his handwriting… here I must admit that my child is left handed (no excuse) and writes like a crab.
She explained to me that she realizes that Tris has no problem with his spelling because she has asked him in the past to spell out the words she was unable to make out in his tests and he has always been spot on. Unfortunately she is not permitted to mark the words correct if she can not clearly see whats written. He is still in the top 7% of the class, even after loosing points due to his handwriting. He is the best reader in the class too (Yes yes that was me bragging! But his teacher said so, so its ok to brag)
She has been using him as a form of teachers aid, to assist the other kids in the class and explain concepts to them from a child’s point of view (kids tend to “get” things when explained by other kids) and he takes the role extremely seriously!
In light of all the above Tris has made a plan, he will be practicing his writing every night… I cant believe this little Einstein originated from me! But it does worry me that he expects to much from himself and how much it bothers him when he does not reach his own high expectations…