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ANyone else have a kid that could care less, just doing time....

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I have a 10th grader that I have hs his entire school career.  He is vivacious, caring, and social, BUT could care less about school and I have to remind him weekly that the subjects he is doing now are required for graduation.   He has always wanted to go to ps and this year I told him I would sign him up next year.  The only reason he wants to go now is  he would go to his girlfriend's school.  I am actually a fan of this because it is a brand new hs and it is only starting out with 9th and 10 grade next year.  Yes, he is in 10th this year, but he would redo 10th to get to go with his gf.  go figure.  He will only be 15 April 24th so he is actually a year ahead.  HE has made A's and B;s this year and done a fine job, only because that is the only way he can see his gf.  This gf (that I like a lot, she is a great girl, she talks to him about doing good in school, she is doing ALL honors classes is ps).Hey, I will take the good work he is doing now. IT used to take him 3-4 hours to do an hours worth of work, so him finishing now in record time each day and making good grades is a school party for me.   BUt now, she may not be able to transfer to this new school, so he said he will stay home.  


SO back to my question:  I see posts on here of a LOT, MOST, of these kids are like rocket scientist level minds, way ahead, they are achievers.  Well, still not my kid.  He is doing ONLY what he has to to graduate, but making good grades.  He hates school, always has.  He is undecided about his future career choice, but has leaned toward law enforcement.  He is head strong and keeps saying "he'll do just fine."   I love this kid with every breath, but he is a challenge and has been since he entered this world.  He has 2 jobs,(cutting grass, and working in dog agility and search/ rescue dog training)  does excellent WHEN he wants to, has a great sense of friends and what he should do as far as no drugs, drinking etc.  I can trust him.  He sticks to his values and doesn't get influenced by others.  SO I try not to worry about his future,but I still worry about his future. Make sense?  Any other kids out there that did it their way and succeeded!! 


I think I don't feel like HE is a failure, AT ALL, but maybe I am failing him in some way.  

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He sounds like a fine young man to me. He knows what matters to him and what doesn't, he can hold down multiple jobs and study independently at home, he values good relationships, has a mature and decent moral compass...he even has very admirable career ambitions that are within the reach of a capable git'er-done type person.


Mama, just give thanks.


I have a boy like this, too. I know I'm going to be able to depend upon him for a lifetime, as will his family and community. He's just solid. His brother, who is the rocket scientist type, would love to be this steady, seriously.

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I meant to add, we've also considered putting our similar 10th grader into school next year. Well, I've talked to the school people and they don't recommend it. The teachers and guidance counselors I've spoken with have told me that if his strength is to put his head down and focus, but get done with his academics very efficiently so he can get onto his jobs and activities that do motivate him, he will NOT like school.


Too much wasted time, too much red tape, too much homework and anxiety bleeding over into after-school hours. He wouldn't enjoy his academic studies one whit more but he would have to add frustration to the mix.


Just something to think about. :D

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There was a thread on here a couple months back about all the kids on this board who are not aiming to be rocket scientists.  It might be worth hunting down, since the conversation showed there are lots.


My youngest has never liked school.  Even in public school for K-2, he did the minimal, just wanted to have fun, tried to get things wrong in order to get out of the gifted classroom.  I just couldn't see sending him to public high school (which he wanted) when that was still his character.


Personally, I set my minimum goals.  I agree we don't want to do them a disservice, so I spent a lot of time deciding what was really essential to me.  Basically, I found I could not see graduating him without strong communication skills (i.e. 4 years of English), knowledge of American History, a solid math foundation, and reading the entire Bible.  Then I showed him what a full college prep transcript would look like, told him why it would give him more options throughout his future, all the while in the back of my mind I knew what my minimums were -- i.e. where i would compromise and where I wouldn't. When needed, I gave him options for ways to learn, gave him extra credit options, gave him credit for unusual electives.


Things were rough sometimes, for both of us (I agree with Tibbie, be thankful for your young many, he sounds great!).  His 12th grade transcript feels like a lame mess to me, for various reasons.  He's working "sweat labor" this first year out of high school, which is what he wanted, and he is supporting himself 100%.  And wonder of wonders, he went through all the hoops to apply to college for next fall and was accepted.


There is some value in letting him be him.  And like Tibbie said, these kids have some strengths that others may not have.



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I really don't know what to say, but even the brightest, achieving kids have challenges, some serious. It sounds like your DS is doing great.


You've probably tried this, but perhaps trying to give lots of options to your DS (even something very unconventional) for one or more of his classes might increase his interest level. Best wishes!

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I have kids on both ends of the spectrum and in between ;)  I think this helps me to see this site for what it is...moms seeking help, advice, and encouragement.  It is difficult to know how to make good decisions for kids who struggle with either academics/motivation, but it is also difficult to make decisions for the "rocket scientists" or "high achievers".  Both sides come with their own set of difficulties.  Many of the moms are not intending to make anyone feel bad, they are simply seeking advice and help for what is best for their own child's situation.  I have had threads going at the same time concerning two different kids - one with a "help me motivate this child" sort of title and the other with a question about dd potentially making National Merit next year.   

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I have a kid like this. It's not that she struggles with academics (she's dyslexic, but plenty smart) or with motivation (she's extremely motivated about some things) she just isn't all that interested in school. She is interested in lots of things, but she isn't interested in "achievement" just because others are doing it or that it's what is expected. She just sees the world differently. She is very strong willed, and has always followed her own path and I expect she always will. 


I worry too, because the world is not always kind to those who buck the system. But, a very smart parent once told me that the best thing I could do would be to really have faith that she will find her own way. Having confidence that she is perfect and complete just as she is is something that will stay with her as she navigates the world. I think this is the best advice I have ever received and I aspire to follow it. I don't always succeed, but I try. My anxiety won't help, so I really have no other choice.

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