Sunday, September 7, 2014

When Your Child Does Not Do Well in School

Is your child struggling in school? I did. For me, school was about socializing, not about studying.

I loved people and, apparently, I loved to talk, as I was reminded at my mother's funeral last winter.

My 92 year old high school teacher greeted me at the calling hours:

 "Do you know who I am? (I didn't. It's been 48 years since high school!)  I'm Mrs. Haskins, your home room teacher."

"Oh, Mrs. Haskins! How sweet of you to come!"

Her next comment surprised me, "Have you stopped talking yet?"

I laughed and reported, "Well, now people pay me to talk!"

She wasn't impressed.

Years ago, I found my husband's report cards. I laughed when I read under the teacher's comments, "Mrs. Miller, I appreciate Danny's sense of humor, but he really needs to settle down in class." My husband grew to become a pastor whose sense of humor and powerful (and often funny) preaching endeared him to his congregations. God used the class clown to reach many for Christ.

I was impressed this summer when I discovered this row of books in my local small-town library, all written by Debbie Macomber.

Who is this Debbie Macomber, and how does she write so many books? As the author of three books, I know writing isn't easy. What type of person has this many words and ideas inside bursting to come forth on the written page?

Debbie Macomber must be an amazing women. I suspect she was a straight A student. Right? Wrong.

Debbie Macomber struggled academically. She is dyslexic. As a child, she could not  read. Teachers didn't know why, so she was placed in the lowest reading group in her school.

Today, this New York Times best selling author's books have sold over 100 million copies in 23 languages.

We parents and teachers become discouraged when children won't stop talking, they are the class clown, or are placed in the lowest reading group. Take heart! God isn't finished with your child yet.

When my own  at times struggled, I reminded myself, What is the most important thing I want my children to learn in school? 

Kindness. I wanted my children to learn to be kind. I'd rather have a kind child than a mean one who excels academically or on the playing field.

What is the most important thing you want your children to learn in school? I suspect it has nothing to do with math or science, but a lot to do with character.

This is my prayer as school begins: That children will grow to be kind and sensitive to the needs of this world. That teachers will be patient and kind and not miss the potential in each precious little one entrusted in their care.

May this splash serenity on the day of any concerned parent. Praying for our children. Won't you pray too?



  1. Amen!!! What I want my child to learn in school is how to be kind and merciful to all she meets. It's a lesson she is learning well, even when being told she shouldn't be friends with certain people . It's a lesson she has seen repeatedly by her father especially! Great blog post, Elaine!

  2. My Elizabeth used to eat lunch with special needs kids because no one else would. I didn't care what her grades were, when I saw her heart.

  3. I remember Emily crying before we moved because a special needs kid in her class would have to sit alone when we moved.

  4. God gave her a tender heart. What a blessing for a mother.


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