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Gutted over son's A level mock results.

(50 Posts)
Purplerainbow1 Mon 25-Jan-16 19:08:38

My son got his A level mock results today and I was totally gutted and disappointed to say the least. And I'm not talking just rubbishy grades, I'm talking 'why did he bother turning up for the exams?!' The thing is, he is very clever but just doesn't seem to want to put any effort in. I'm not holding high hopes for the actual real exams and I don't think he will get into university this September. Anyone else had a similar experience and any advice?

ImperialBlether Mon 25-Jan-16 19:12:27

That's one of the reasons there are mocks, so that the students give a huge fright and start to do some work.

Maybe start talking to him about what he's going to do in September, since he's given up on going to university. Encourage him to look at apprenticeships etc. It should become real, then, that if he doesn't get a move on, he'll end up staying at home instead of going away to university like his friends.

Sometimesithinkimbonkers Mon 25-Jan-16 19:17:38

I got d's and e's in my mocks but got A,B,B&C in actual a levels.
Don't stress just yet xxx

Whatdoidohelp Mon 25-Jan-16 19:20:47

You need to sit him down and make it blatantly clear what will happen if he gets those grades in the real exams. Look at job applications, college applications, apprenticeship applications etc so he can see exactly where his future will take him if he doesn't pull his finger out.

Would he study for financial reward? Just to give him a short term focus?

Purplerainbow1 Mon 25-Jan-16 19:42:34

I definitely think I need to sit down with him and have a long talk, although having said this I've had these talks with him quite a few times now, and all I get is a dopey teenage look and 'yes mum' 'okay mum'. Financial incentive does work and I might try that again. I am living in hope that this will give him a wake up call! Thanks for the advice and I will live by the moto 'Miracles do happen' if for nothing else then for my own sanity. 8-) xx

GloriaHotcakes Mon 25-Jan-16 21:17:34

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

AllChangeLife Mon 25-Jan-16 21:29:12

I didn't do very well in my a levels - I had got an unconditional to uni and so I couldn't be bothered to try.

Bribe him.

It works in the world of business - bonuses are just a bribe to work hard.

I wish someone had bribed me! I might have pulled my finger out.

Purplerainbow1 Mon 25-Jan-16 22:30:01

Thanks AllChangeLife. We had to bribe him when he was doing his gcse's and that worked so I think its definitely worth another go. I'm a bit stuck as to what incentives will work, I suppose the be the best one!

defunctedusername Tue 26-Jan-16 00:33:51

If you think throwing money at the problem is the solution. That is very very sad. No wonder our society is in the situation it is in.

titchy Tue 26-Jan-16 08:00:04

Let him fail. You bribe him through university, and if he can't be bothered then he'll have wasted thousands.

Sometimes kids actually have to feel the consequences themselves, and not be rescued yet again by mum and dad.

He can always return to education when he's more mature.

titchy Tue 26-Jan-16 08:01:00

You CAN'T bribe him through university I meant blush

Choughed Tue 26-Jan-16 08:21:08

Agree. Don't bribe him. If he can't be bothered to get the grades for uni on his own he'll fail his course anyway.

Lots of people wake up a bit later on. He may have to spend a year or so in a low paid job before he finds his motivation to better himself.

What's he like in other areas of his life? Is he spoiled/babied or have you taught him to be independent and to look after himself?

hesterton Tue 26-Jan-16 08:25:22

I hate the idea of bribing a student of that age. He has to see that he is the one responsible for his future not you. He will just mess about and fail uni if he doesn't want it for himself.

Some people are just not ready for uni at that age. Maybe a few years of doing something else might help him find his way by himself. Just be there to offer supportive words but please, hand him back responsibility for himself. You don't even have to be angry. In fact, don't be angry. Be a bit detached. His life.

JellyBaby26 Tue 26-Jan-16 08:32:08

This sounds like me....

I wasn't interested in listening in lessons or revising. There is always something better to do.

My parents were so desperate for me to do well in life they paid for me to be privately educated, they gave me loads of money as bribes I suppose, got me a pony etc etc. it didn't change anything though and I did terribly in my A Levels (C, D & E I think),

Had I have gone to university I would have dropped out or would have just used it as a social thing.

University isn't for everyone. I am so thankful I didn't go. I got a job and went and did a few ski seasons and enjoyed myself and I'm far more intelligent than a lot of friends who went to uni.

The only way you learn is from mistakes, so pushing him will not help and in my experience he will just push back and get frustrated with you!

Fadingmemory Tue 26-Jan-16 08:49:48

Does he want to go to university? Is he averse to leaving home? Have you talked a lot about university and is he taking against it because it is what you want? Do you also envisage and communicate what you think he should be doing as a career? What is in his life besides school and home? Encourage but don't nag. Ultimately whatever you do it is his responsibility so recognise that. He may have to be in a MW job for a while and either work his way up or decide to go back to education later. You will need nerves of steel and it isn't easy. Organise a summer holiday for the rest of the family (if your situation permits) and tell him he can organise and pay for his own because he is or will be 18 and an adult? Not every inert teenager stays inert.

Stillunexpected Tue 26-Jan-16 09:31:45

How were his AS results? That will be very important in determining how he does at A2. Does he want to go to university? What courses has he applied for and what grades does he need? I am really struggling with DS1 at the moment who goes through peaks and troughs in terms of motivation but does really want to do the course for which he has applied at uni so manages to keep going by keeping his eye on the end game. Maybe your son is feeling pushed towards something he doesn't want to do?

Oliversmumsarmy Tue 26-Jan-16 09:39:58

I have been trying to get dd interested in varying colleges, her school doesn't have a 6th form. I was not impressed with a lot of what I saw and knew dd would not fit into a lot of them.

Dd hates anything academic, she is very dyslexic and is about to fail spectacularly her GCSEs and although what she wants to do is purely practical every college we have been to rams down your throat the academic side of things. It is expected that alongside the practical course you are expected to take at least 2 A levels. Also for a lot of colleges the purely practical course has now morphed into a practical and academic course. When I said that maybe she could leave and do work instead the relief was palpable.

Op are you sure your ds actually wants to go to uni? What does "he" want to do. If he is not going to pass his A levels he has wasted 2 years don't waste another 3 forcing him into a mould he doesn't want to be in.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Tue 26-Jan-16 10:22:45

Is there any suggestion that he is secretly worried about leaving school and taking the next step in life?

I wonder what his reaction was to those results, was he dismayed or did he seem unruffled? If you bribed him to take his gcses seriously he might be waiting for similar incentives. Or he may have been under-estimating the study required or confident that whatever happens you will fund his future so thinks there's no urgency about qualifications or jobs.

Iwould think if a fair number of his friends plan to go to university in September it's unlikely he'll want to be left behind.

Purplerainbow1 Tue 26-Jan-16 13:25:56

I am actually quite open and honest with him and we have discussed possibility of a gap year because although he has applied to Uni he's still not sure what he really wants to do with his life. I have explained that whatever he does at uni does not define him for life and he can change careers etc through life. The reason I an disappointed is not because of my expectations and feelings, its because he is letting himself down and wasting potential, which is difficult for me to see in anyone mainly because of personal experiences and having to struggle for the right to go to Uni.

No offence to all those peeps who are saying don't bribe him..but do you have teenagers? Sooner or later you have to bribe them for one reason or another, and I would rather save the bribing for something important. grin

Purplerainbow1 Tue 26-Jan-16 13:35:03

Ps Jeremy Corbyn, please don't judge as you don't have the full facts of my situation, I am certainly NOT throwing money at him as I actually don't have a lot of money 'to throw' at anyone. And you can't really judge my situation and then compare it to society. By saying that you are in fact saying that I am contributing to society's ills because I might be using money as an incentive to motivate my child. Well, you don't actually know how much money I an suggesting, whether this will leave me broke but I still choose to do it to motivate my son, or whether I choose to do it anyway in the end, oh I could go on and on, but the fact of the matter is that its my money, my son, my situation, which you don't actually have any real knowledge of, I can't believe people leave such judgemental opinions and comments without having the slightest clue to a person's situation!!! angry

titchy Tue 26-Jan-16 13:55:03

I have two teenagers for the record OP. And I didn't bribe either of them, and have no intention of doing so in the future.

Seriously if you bribe him to do well in his A Levels, he goes to university and starts to slack, then what? Do you bribe him to do well in his first year exams, because there's £9000 + maintenance loan at stake now? What about second year exams? Even more at stake? Finals? Job? If you can't back off and let him make mistakes now (and imo you should have backed off and let him make his mistakes a few years ago when the stakes weren't as high), when will you?

If he hasn't learnt self-motivation now, he's not going to until he's grown up a bit. Throwing money at it doesn't help him in any way; it just delays the inevitable, although it will make you feel better.

defunctedusername Tue 26-Jan-16 14:17:14

Purplerain, Posting on here to get advice involves a responders judgement of the situation as you have described it. If you are only expecting replies that agree with how you are dealing then what's the point?

Imho it is actually irrelevant how much money you bribe your 17/18 year old son with, it is my judgement that it is wrong. You say you had to struggle to get to University, then let your son struggle as well, it will probably be good for him. I can elucidate more if you want?

I don't think my first post was rude, I just think it was sad that people use money as the answer rather than hard work. And yes plenty of people have teenagers (including me) that don't feel the need to bribe them.

Often people get upset at comments that hit very close to the bone, could that be the case here?

Purplerainbow1 Tue 26-Jan-16 14:25:10

Thanks titchy but no I don't think it will make me feel better. And tbh I think its better to talk to your kids and discuss things. Having said that though I do genuinely think that in life incentives are there for a reason and as human beings, it does help us all to have incentives and motivations. when I am talking about 'bribes' that's what I mean. in an ideal world the good exam results should be 'incentive' enough but unfortunately not everyone works that way, and also, I am not talking loads of cash or expensive equipment either. Incentives are exactly that, just that little push to do better, people will make mistakes and their own decisions regardless. If I do give him an incentive it will be his decision entirely whether he works towards it or not. He will have to do that in the world of work anyway. Also, I have to add that many high schools now use incentives/rewards/treats to manage behaviour. Personally, I think its not the end of the world to provide motivational incentives for children, or people in general. Also he is quite independent and he is well aware that even if we provide incentives now, that won't always be the case, its about boundaries and expectations. And just to add that he has actually been earning his own money for the past two years, the cash incentive was just a thought, I might buy him concert tickets or something instead, for example.

Purplerainbow1 Tue 26-Jan-16 14:30:58

Jeremy Corbyn, I asked for advice, not judgements. Thanks for your judgements but I won't be taking any of them. And yes I certainly do think its wrong for someone to sit in judgement when they have no idea of the facts. Again, giving advice and dishing out judgements are two completely different things, it would be good if you could learn the difference so perhaps next time you can be more positive in your postings. And imo your original post was not only rude, it was negative, of no real use apart from a mini rant judging my situation. Also I suggest you change your user name, you are doing a disservice to a great man. I won't be wasting my time reading or replying to any more of your posts as they are not constructive in the slightest.

Purplerainbow1 Tue 26-Jan-16 14:33:51

PS This post has turned into a discussion on the pros and cons of bribing your children. I had originally posted if anyone has had similar experience or advice, so any more on that would be much appreciated. smile

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