That marks the end of first half of the year. Teachers wanted to meet and talk to parents about children’s progress in school in the last 6 months.
That is how long K has been to his new kindergarten since we made the change.
We met up with his class teacher on May 28. Armed with K’s exam papers, exercise books, and progress report, Teacher Prema quickly went through with us how K was doing in school up until now.
A Typical Scenario of A Parent-Teacher Meeting
The highlight of the day was progress report in which she evaluated K based on a few categories – before we glanced through his exercise books.
Here is a nutshell what will normally happen in a parent-teacher meeting:
- Teacher shares more about the bad of the child than the good with parents.
- Parents get uptight over it and feel that they are not good parents.
After the session ends, parents have a chat with the child and hope he can change for the better – as though he has done something real bad.
To make things worse, new classes will be added to the child’s already-packed time table in the name of overcoming shortcomings. Bad move.
What Happened During the Session
Back to the meeting. The same happened that day for us. Once I used to feel bad about the whole episode. But not anymore.
What intrigued me was how the teacher focused on K’s weakest areas – she hardly mentioned about what he can do best.
Due to how we were brought up, we do the same as what our parents did for us. We want our child to achieve the best. We want him to overcome his weaknesses and… hopefully one day he can be “perfect.”
Unfortunately, what we should do is the opposite: focus on the child’s strengths.
We tend to take our child’s talents and strengths for granted. We always think that since he can do well in those areas, there is nothing much he should do.
What Parents Should Do
That’s where we are misguided. Instead, we should leverage on the child’s strengths and help him hone his skills further. Help him go to the next level.
Sad but true, this is not what we normally do. We are so worried about things our child does not do well and find ways to help him cross the hurdle… and be a “better” person.
If we choose to do that, we turn ourselves into weary parents because it is going against the flow. And most likely the child too will end up as stressful as the parents. Soon, we will lose our joy in parenting. And the child will lose interest in learning.
Furthermore, the child will be wondering why he can’t seem to satisfy his parents no matter what he does.
Let’s face it. There are things that our child can’t do as perfectly as other kids. For example, I don’t think J can do well in outdoor activities, let alone excel in it.
So, why sweat over it? Why not just focus on what our child is good at and take it from there.
I don’t blame her. Teacher Prema is trying to do her best as a teacher. To them, teachers’ role is to help develop students into better persons. That’s why she focused so much on areas K got C’s for.
I was a bit uneasy and agitated in the beginning but once I got the perspective right, I began to take it lightly and not be so disturbed by it.
So what’s my take on this? If it is not too serious of a problem, I will do nothing about the C’s K has got. Otherwise, I will help him cope with it.
The point I am trying to drive home is to focus the attention on what K is good at. And see what I can do to bring him to the next level by taking advantage of his talents and strengths.
Oh by the way, what are the good things teachers said about K? His work is neat. He’s meticulous. He hates losing. He’s confident (sometimes over-confident). He’s a perfectionist.