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11yo son with "I don't care" attitude

(8 Posts)
emmief77 Mon 01-Dec-14 18:20:59

Back home from parents evening and DS teacher has flagged up his poor attitude in the classroom.

DH & I have seen a change in DS over the last few months. He has been having some end of term assessments and he told me "I'm not going to bother because I know I'll get low marks" - His standard of homework has been awful, he puts less than minimal effort in

Tried to speak to him about teachers concerns and i was met with "I'm not bothered about my attitude to learning" , I asked why "because I'm not" and put his headphones on. I tried to take them off him to talk to him, but we ended up both pulling at them and I snapped them. DS said "oh well, they still work"

His teacher said he puts obstacles in the way to any suggestions she makes, which he also does at home. She said DS has the ability but his attitude is affecting his learning sad

DS has a twin brother and I don't get any of this with him. Also an older DD who gives me her fair share of teenage behaviour problems, but I've not experienced this before

Am considering withdrawing his football practise as that is the only thing he seems remotely bothered by, not sure whether this will really work though??

ThinkIveBeenHacked Mon 01-Dec-14 18:24:13

Is it possible that he is really struggling, and so puts on a "dont care" attitude as a sort of self-preservation? "I failed thay test because I couldnt be arsed to revise" might (in his head) seem a better outcome than "I tried so so hard but X,Y,Z make no sense to me so I was never going to be able to do it".

emmief77 Mon 01-Dec-14 19:37:21

Thanks ThinkIveBeenHacked I hadn't thought about it from that point of view... Like a lot of boys he does struggle with literacy but a few weeks ago he produced an outstanding piece of work. I've asked his teacher for a copy so I can display at home as I'm sooo proud of him smile

DH and I had just another chat with him, started off with his usual stroppy "I don't care' reply, so were very gentle with him and he started crying. We checked with him if any problems at school and he said no.. Will keep an eye on him

Whereisegg Mon 01-Dec-14 19:49:57

I think his twin never causing you any issues could be an issue for him.
If he is struggling, seeing his twin coast or breeze through work could be almost like rubbing his face in it.

Do you talk a lot about school over dinner or anything?
Maybe ease off on compliments in front of him for a bit if so?

ThinkIveBeenHacked Mon 01-Dec-14 20:33:46

How do you approach homework/tests etc? Is it "we want high grades/scores" or is it "we want you to do the best of your abilities"?

Pressure (and comparison) are quite challenging and maybe he needs to understand that its effort that counts, rather than results.

emmief77 Tue 02-Dec-14 19:49:57

Always encourage effort rather than reuslts, but DS has been putting in zero effort!! - His twin brother did home a few weeks ago as he thought he had gone up a whole level in maths. Naturally I was proud of him and give him lots of praise, but I am mindful of how this affects the stroppy twin!! - When I spoke to stroppy son's teacher, she said he was on identical level for his Maths which I have told him..

Spoke to stroppy son this morning, told him he was going to be late for school and he replied "I don't care", and then when I picked him from school he was beaming as had "the best Maths lesson ever" .... jekyl and hyde?

wheresthelight Wed 03-Dec-14 12:38:44

definitely sounds like his is finding the adjustment hard.

my dss is the same age and has gone from being the smartest kid in his junior school for maths to one of many at senior school. it is a very hard lesson to learn at such a young age! he is finding it hard not being the first with the answer and having to cope with the whole change of pace and style of teaching etc. he has been a right stroppy sod since September although it is starting to settle down.

my concern wrt not praising his twin is that you may inadvertently cause a problem with him if it suddenly changes.

from your posts it sounds like the twins have different teachers, is this the case? if so could it be that he is finding life without his twin at his side a little daunting and struggling to make friends?

athleticsmum Thu 04-Dec-14 13:19:43

emmie - no real answers for you, but I just wanted you to know you are not alone!

I have twin DD's in year 7 and I have a stroppy one! The effort is there at school, its the attitude at home that's awful. She won't take any responsibility for anything and coasts along.

I refuse to stop praising my other DD because that's unfair on her. She could end up not bothering because there is no point.

I have put stroppy DD's attitude down to hormones plus dealing with a new school and being the youngest in the year (Summer babies). That gives me hope that its temporary. Without hope, I would curl up in a ball and howl!! LOL

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