A has been back in school for a full week. She had a good week and seems to be adjusting well to the new rules and ways of doing things that her school implemented for this year. She goes to a tiny school and they have always been more family than rigidly structured, but in talking to past students who are now in high school, they realized that although their students were doing great academically when they got to high school, they just weren’t prepared for the way things were, well…run. This year they decided to change a few things and not hand hold as much in the middle school grades and enforce more strict rules for things like turning in assignments late, or forgetting to bring the proper materials to the proper class. I think it is high time. I know this more structured routine will be fantastic for A’s ADHD and Anxiety disorders. I’ve loved the school as she was growing up because it WAS small, and the teachers and principal took an interest in her and helped her in any way they could. Now it’s time to to teach her how things will be done when she enters the terrifying world of high school.
I also made a deal with her. A is very bright. Like a lot of ADHD kids, that just doesn’t translate to straight A’s in the classroom. Add to that some other issues she has had in the past in her personal life, and her grades were always just average, and she struggled to keep them there. She often felt stupid and sometimes would just give up. She was disorganized and chaotic, resulting in forgetting assignments, or forgetting to study for tests. It was a rare day that she actually brought home EVERY book she should have. With her love of art, I knew art lessons would be something she would absolutely love. I told her that if she kept up with things at school – wrote down her assignments, brought her books home, finished homework, studied – that I did not care what letter grades she made. I just wanted to see that she was actively doing her best to keep up with her work and if she did well and tried her best – that I would give her art lessons. She was quite excited by the prospect. She spent an extra vigilant week, painstakingly writing everything down and keeping track. Every afternoon she would proudly pull out homework and show me her binder, all neat and in order, and her assignments neatly written in her assignment pad. So far so good! We will see how she holds up for the rest of the quarter!
There is something to be said for routine. I know how much I crave it, even when I find a hard time sticking to it. I wonder why that is. Part of me is glad school is back in and things will be a little more structured, but part of me is sad to see summer go. I guess now it’s time to catch up on all the things I’ve been putting off. Time to get the house cleaned and organized, mow the yard probably one time before fall, and get my hind end back in the writing chair. I’ve so many projects started! I’m ready to get something finished!