I have been homeschooling my kids since 1998. I work hard to write the lesson plans, and I know my kids are intelligent. My oldest is in 11th grade, but since last year she cannot get her assigned work done. She has been taking up to three weeks to get one weeks work done. And believe me, her work is not that hard. She just seems so easily distracted. She wants to be a nun, and spends a lot of time meditating and praying and reading religious books, but I can’t have this schoolwork laziness continue.
Any suggestions from others who have been in this situation. :nope: Please no one telling me I am asking her to do too much, or that her soul is more important. Even the convents won’t take you if you have not finished High School.
Have you tried to find ways to make her lessons apply to her religious interests?
It might be worthwhile to speak to a priest or a religious sister to get ideas for possible connections, or to even have your daughter speak to one to get a bit of a wake up call. As you say, Religious life requires commitment, and often great attention to the little mundane details of everyday life, like doing chores to keep the community going, and her schoolwork is where she will demonstrate her ability to “stick to it”.
Also, you should have some real-world consequences in place if she does not complete her work, as in classroom settings. In school, if a student turns in an assignment three weeks late, she gets no credit for it. If this is habit, she will fail the class, and, in the case of 11th and 12th graders, endanger her ability to graduate.
If she does not complete an assignment on time, she should be permitted no other “fun” activities until it is completed. Stand over her shoulder and watch her, if necessary. Do you report her progress to anyone? Is she required to take a high school exit exam? As a home schooler you are her teacher, counselor, and Principal all in one. You can always postpone her “graduation” until she completes her requirements.
You can require her to get a job if she intends to live with you after she turns 18. (Her narrow prospects may prompt her to consider completing her education–especially if her dreams of being a nun are hindered) It’s her choice if she wants to still be in high school when she is in her 20’s, but as her mom you can make that choice difficult to live with.
I have to agree with Rose.
The other thing I would try to do is see what type of learning she IS doing on her own, if any. I know, long shot, but sometimes at that age, they tend to take on their own education. She might be ready to break out of structure and do better with something where she has a little more input. Part time jobs, volunteer work, ministries and apostlates all have educational value. The March for Life would’ve been a perfect opportunity for loads of learning while working for a good cause.
Reading certain books, say off the Great Books list (see J. Mortimer Adler) could be included. She gets to pick (off your screened list), but as long as she reads the book, can converse on it, and make a report, then it’s a go. If she watches certain movies, esp. those with a moral element, and can converese on it, she’s learning something. Find projects (sewing, baking, building, gardening) that have to do with practical math.
See if she’d like to take classes at the local community college, dual enrollment. Try ONE for starters, and make her pick up the tab if she fails it. Whatver order she chooses, if she chooses, some college won’t hurt.
And if she is not enrolled in a credit bank or home high school such as Seton, then DO set her up with a transcript and a portfolio. The transcript is easy. I did my kids on Excel. The portfolio she will have to maintain herself, but it will show her capabilities.
Is it possible for her to have 5 years of High School? or is that too odd. Does that look bad to a college? Also, we have not had her signed up for the SAT’s or ACT because she has truly not wanted to go to college. In my mind, I don’t think she currently can focus on a 4 hour test anyway. :eek:
Granted, last year we went through some very bad times with her mental illness and all. I moved some of her 10th grade stuff into the beginning of this year, but now that we are fully into 11th grade material, she is as slow as mud!
If this keeps up, she will be taking Algebra II for 3 years!:bigyikes:
I have a friend who is pulling her hair out with her 19 year old. He’s dragging his feet finishing his sophomore year. :eek: He is one of the brightest kids I know, but he has so much trouble with diligence. He has worked a job fulltime and parttime since he was sixteen and is well respected at work. He is a big help at home, particularily because one of his parents can’t drive to a medical problem.
He has a vocation and is very discouraged.
IMO, you have to get very serious about this. She needs to get focused. I would cut out other privileges dramatically.
But, also, you might consider switching approaches. 11th graders can take classes for dual credit–and that includes online courses. I would consider doing that. It makes her accountable to another authority figure.
attending to your daily duties is a spiritual matter. So, don’t isolate her work from her spiritual life.
My oldest is only 13, so my advice is only coming from observing my friends’ kids. So, I may be off base.
For many hs’ing kids they need to be knocked down in their ego in order to finish highschool.
They KNOW they are more well educated with an 10th grade education than some of the sophmores in college, they are “smarter” and more “social” to adults than their peers.
I think the best thing is to
a) graduate them in June with your own homeschool "standards"
b) ask a college professor to confuse them and get rid of their know-it-all ism (and don’t say your hs kid dosn’t, I’ve never met a hs’er who’s dosn’t think they are somehow better than their peers)
c) send them to school for a week
d) remove any of the things they like (jobs, books, etc)
No law says you can’t do five years, esp. if there have been “issues”.
Not everybody is college material, but she DOES need the skills to earn her own living. I suggest dual enrollment at the community college in what used to be called “vo-tech” courses.
- dual enrollments
- restriction of life to academics until there is major and long-term improvement (iow, she needs to do better and she needs to do it for more than a couple of weeks)
- visit some convents and speak to some nuns. she would have a hard time being accepted in a convent with this attitude. be sure she understand that a convent it not a place to run away from life to. she may still need a college degree to full-fill the duties of some orders for example. what does she have to help an order fullfill their mission?
- be sure her behavior is not related to any medications. I have a niece on some meds for mental illness and one of the major side-effects for her is it really bunts her emotions and thought process in general. So she has to take 2 addition meds to counter act the effects of the first.