I think my child is falling behind in school. What should I do?

by admin | 16th November 2021 | , , ,

As a parent, it is common to worry about how your child compares to their peers at every stage of their development. From the moment they enter the world and even beyond the completion of their university degree, it remains at the forefront of your mind. Who can blame you? You’re a parent! It’s in your nature.

Right now, you worry your child is struggling to keep up in class. For a while, they seemed to be going well, until recently. Recently, you’ve noticed a few things that raise warning flags you feel you need to pay attention to before it’s too late.

It could just be a phase. We all have bad days, weeks, even months. However, if your child is facing actual learning challenges, it’s best to address it sooner before they fall even further and further behind their peers at school.

So, how can you identify whether your child is having learning difficulties and falling behind in school?

Signs to watch for

To help you recognise whether your child is falling behind, here are some signs to watch for.

1. Avoiding homework or school altogether – does your child seem to have no homework at all or leave their homework to the very last minute? Maybe they’re also making excuses to not go to school. These may be signs they are avoiding their school responsibilities, probably to prevent the feeling of discouragement.

2. Spending an excessive amount of time on homework – is your child spending a significantly more amount of time on their homework than they used to? Spending excessive amounts of time on homework could mean they are having difficulty understanding concepts to complete the tasks.

3. Reported misbehaviour at school – has your child’s teacher mentioned any misbehaviour in the classroom? This could look like distracting other students or refusing to answer questions when asked. This behaviour, especially if it’s unusual for your child, may be a sign that they don’t know the answers they’re expected to know.

4. Reluctance to talk about school – did your child used to be open about school but is now unwilling to engage in any conversation related to school? Even a simple question about how their school day was seems to be met with an emotional or dismissive response to stop it in its tracks.

5. Poor marks in tests and assignments – this is a more obvious sign. If your child has been consistently receiving poor marks in school tests, projects, or assignments, this could mean more than disinterest in school. A consistent pattern of poor results may be because your child is struggling with the learning material.


What you can do

Once you’re confident your child is falling behind in school, what can you do to help them? There are a few simple actions you can take.

  • Speak with their teacher – raise the matter with their teacher. Share information about what you’ve observed at home and see whether this is consistent with what their teacher is seeing in the classroom. Their teacher may also be able to share some strategies on how to help your child’s learning outside the classroom.
  • Get an independent assessment – to reduce the subjectivity in determining whether your child is falling behind compared to peers, try an independent assessment to help you gauge exactly where they are at against the benchmark for their learning stage. At Global Education Academy, we offer diagnostic assessments to help you do just that. Book a Diagnostic Assessment with us today if this is what you need.
  • Give them extra support – if the chat with their teacher and/or independent assessment reveal that your child needs additional support to catch up in their learning, give them that. This may look like devoting more time to guide them through their homework tasks or enrolling them in tutoring classes outside of school. This extra support should also help give them the confidence they need to believe in their abilities.
  • Talk to them about it – in some cases, your child may not want to talk about how they are struggling, that is normal. Even if they are unwilling to talk, let them know that it is okay and that there is no shame in having learning difficulties.
  • Remember you are not alone – though it may seem like it, you’re not the only parent with a child who is falling behind in school. This is a shared experience among many parents. Just as you’re open to having a conversation with your child, also be open to talking with other parents you trust. You never know, you may pick up some useful tips or strategies in the process.

Global Education Academy is also here for you. If you ever need to chat or have any questions about your child’s learning journey, please contact us on 1300 001 432.

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