Backward and Forward
In life, there are some things which are unexpected, such as raining suddenly when the sun is shining brighter than ever, going to a masquerade ball only to realize that you are the only one wearing a costume, or not nailing the job interview even though you thought you delivered great answers.
But for a child, there are some issues in his life which might seem unexpected, such as being held back in class while children his age are moving up to a higher level. This would create stress, anxiety, and feelings of low self-esteem since he will feel that he is not at par with his other classmates. Signs of these feelings include withdrawal from the things he usually like to do, not having enough energy at home and at school, or being unable to sleep at night.
But take heed. Whenever your child feels any of these things, you can comfort him in ways that would help him understand and face his situation.
According to Ms. Malou Cooper, a development consultant for almost three decades, here are some things to keep in mind when this happens:
Have faith in your child’s ability to catch up and express that confidence to your child. You must stay patient while your child adjusts to school and the schoolwork, while at the same time taking steps to motivate him to transition quickly, such as finding time to review the day’s events with the child in order to monitor his progress.
You can also help your child with his schoolwork when he finds himself having difficulties.
At the other end of the spectrum is a child who moves up one year ahead of his peers. Even if this child looks like he has a better time with schoolwork, he may still feel anxious, uncomfortable and stressed out since he would feel that he is not equipped with the right source of information to struggle with the requirements of someone older than him. As a parent, here are some of the things that should be kept in mind:
Never try to slow your child down. Instead, continue to nurture his gift, but at the same time, do not pressure him to be ahead all the time, since this will also stress him out.
Inform his teachers that the child is advanced compared to the new school’s standards and suggest the possibility of acceleration or being placed in the gifted child program.
Finally, remember that your child must develop his other talents so he would not be bored by just doing schoolwork. This will not only make him a great student, but will also ensure that he is a well-rounded individual.