Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Oh yes I did.

I dread parent teacher conferences.

"Not turning in some assignments."

"Not working up to his/her potential."

I don't let the kids watch t.v./do computer games on school nights. I ask EVERYDAY "what homework do you have" and I hear "I did it all at school".

My husband and I encourage them to do their best so they can go to college and make something better of their lives.

I am not expecting absolute straight A's (well, I am but I know I can't project my perfectionism on my kids) but I do expect that assignments get done and turned in. I get on their cases when I know late assignments need doing until they are done.

This last conference though, there was a new problem. Showing a bad attitude in P.E.

Now, I remember having a bad attitude about P.E. I muttered under my breath over pushups and situps, but I had the sense to leave my face a blank when facing the teacher, and I still tried to do them, however pathetic I was at it.

After a couple of years of substituting and teaching at-risk kids, I learned what it was like to be on the other side of the room. It's hard to try to get kids who have NO interest in learning to just do their assigned work. When they cop an attitude, it just makes things harder. More energy is wasted whining than it would take to JUST DO IT!

So when the P.E. teacher mentioned to me that my daughter not only rolls her eyes, but (and at that moment my daughter's head dropped back and she looked at the ceiling as if to say, "Lord give me strength" or some such) and the teacher saw her and said, "YES! She does that!" I just about flew off the handle right there. But I stopped and had a brilliant idea.

"Okay, next Tuesday I'll come join the class."

The teacher grinned, my daughter was chagrined and I think I got her attention finally.

At home we had the lecture about showing teachers respect whether we like the class or not.

Yesterday, my daughter said, "I'm doing better, you don't have to come."

Ha! "I'm coming anyway."

She was definitely dragging herself out the door this morning. I got my youngest on the bus and drove our Jeep with mismatched door to school. I signed in, I found the gym.....and I did my best although I was pathetic and panting while doing the pushups and situps. The other girls were staring at me. I smiled. I thought, "Yes girls, do your workout or you could end up looking like ME!"

When it was all over, the teacher said, "She did better today."

I said, "If she gives you more attitude, let me know and I'll come back."

You know I will. Hopefully my daughter knows I will too. Because I really don't need to look pathetic in front of slim little 8th graders, but if that's what it takes...I can do it with a smile on my face.


Lourie said...

You are officially my idol!!! Sadly I was the whiny type when it came to PE! ANd look at me now!! But yeah...I am totally on board with going to school with them. Awesome.

Pam said...


Cherie said...

LOVE IT - That was pure Genius!!
My kids would die if I showed up at school much less in their P.E. Class - You are wicked cool!

mormonhermitmom said...

Thanks ladies. I was hoping my daughter would figuratively "die" but she actually got a kick out of seeing me duck and cover when the gym stereo was turned on all of a sudden WAY TOO LOUD! No fair! We never got to run to music when I was in middle school! Talk about spoiled!

Mom said...

If my mom had come to PE with me she would have found me hiding out in the girl's room a good deal of the time. I found the experience often embarrassing and humiliating and don't get me started on Friday gym dances where you lined up on opposite sides of the gym and were paired off with a male partner(usually someone a foot shorter).Hopefully, however, she can look at gym with eyes not rolled back in her head.

Ruth Ann said...

One lady I knew was taking care of her nephew and he wasn't doing well in school, might have even skipped class. She said Alright, I'll go to all your classes in my bathrobe and pajamas. And SHE DID!! At the end of the day she said, And don't skip class again or it'll be a bathing suit next time! (She was fairly obese and it wouldn't have been pretty.)

Elaine Shandra said...

Hilarious! And very creative! No parents came to see me at parent/teacher conference. I'm glad you went to your daughter's.

Sarah Bishop Jackson said...

I believe that true parenting is on the decline.

I have one daycare mom that brings her child with things that are not appropriate for young kids (movies, toys, junk food) and tells me it is easier for me to say no than her as she doesn't want to listen to a tantrum or say no. I pity this generation of kids whose parents do not know how to parent.

Good for you, Robyn!!