We have learned a lot around here these days on the topic of discipline. Not the "you are in trouble" kind. But the "get it done" kind of discipline. It's been a topic of conversation lately. I am no stickler for grades because I think we have an archaic system. Whose to say that grades are actually a measure of what you are learning. But we live in a system that doesn't want to change and seems to keep measuring our kids by the same standard we know doesn't work.
When I noticed Graham's grades starting to slip, I decided to dig a little deeper. Turns out, my child has the same disorder most of the world suffers from - lack of discipline. His grades have been slipping because he lacks the discipline most 12 year old boys lack. He's distracted with hormones and friends and electronics and life. Because being 12 is actually harder than it looks.
So our work together these days is in getting the hard work done first...for both of us. I have to make the calls I don't want to or deal with the my looming and inevitable taxes. He has to read that extra chapter and study for those quizzes he knows are coming. In turn, I report to him about my struggles with work and he reports to me about his where his struggles are with school. End result: we both have a cheerleader and we both crossed crappy tasks off our lists of things to do.
I think kids need to learn early on that their struggles are real. However, I think they need to realize they aren't alone in them. I never knew my parents struggled. Or other kids. I think it's okay to tell them a little bit of that. Mostly, I think it's important for them to know they are not alone in their battles. They have support.
So we are learning a lot about discipline right now. And elbow grease. And grit. And hard, hard work. Sweaty work. Getting your hands dirty work. Not just here. But all over our lives. And the result is going to be the harvest he reaps come report card day.
And if it all works out, we just might celebrate with a little gelato!