Child refuses to be taught

deliberatemom

Active member
Joined
Nov 11, 2019
Messages
32
Well friends, I've run into an interesting struggle with my oldest daughter (she just turned 12). She refuses to be taught. She feels like she knows everything and if I show her how to do something (i.e. a math equation or the proper spelling for a word) she gets mad at me and most of the time insists that I'm wrong and she's right. She is aligned with our language arts and mathematics provincial curriculum and has been getting low assessment scores in math (an external teacher makes them)... but she refuses to let me show her anything that may help / teach her. I'm at a loss.

This is truly affecting her learning experiences and is putting a strain on our relationship. Any ideas / suggestions?
 

EightGreatKids

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 12, 2019
Messages
57
That's tough! I'm sorry! It will be different from child to child, of course, but when my kids are "prickly" the best thing I can do is love them extra hard. One of my older sons was like this around age 12 and in retrospect I can see that it was because he was struggling with feeling loved and capable. When I wanted to help him, I'd go about it two different ways.

One way was to dish him up a big bowl of ice cream, his favorite treat and sit next to him and get him talking and laughing. We'd laugh so hard we'd cry and then he'd sometimes ask me for help OR he'd ask me to find him help (a tutor) rather than helping him myself. But he'd be willing to accept help, and I think it was because he felt loved.

The second way was to ask him for help with coding or investments or something he was really good at. He was so great to explain, but I think the real benefit was that he remembered how good he was at other things.

And then when he'd accept help, I'd be sure to make a big deal about his successes, no matter how small.

We all avoid things we think we're bad at. It's human nature. And when we feel dumb at something, someone pointing out our shortcomings just exacerbates the problem. Not that you are at fault in any way, but it's all about the perception of the kid,and kids that age aren't known for their wisdom.

I'd just try loving on her a holy ton and see if it helps. It can't hurt!

Hugs!
 

deliberatemom

Active member
Joined
Nov 11, 2019
Messages
32
That's tough! I'm sorry! It will be different from child to child, of course, but when my kids are "prickly" the best thing I can do is love them extra hard. One of my older sons was like this around age 12 and in retrospect I can see that it was because he was struggling with feeling loved and capable. When I wanted to help him, I'd go about it two different ways.

One way was to dish him up a big bowl of ice cream, his favorite treat and sit next to him and get him talking and laughing. We'd laugh so hard we'd cry and then he'd sometimes ask me for help OR he'd ask me to find him help (a tutor) rather than helping him myself. But he'd be willing to accept help, and I think it was because he felt loved.

The second way was to ask him for help with coding or investments or something he was really good at. He was so great to explain, but I think the real benefit was that he remembered how good he was at other things.

And then when he'd accept help, I'd be sure to make a big deal about his successes, no matter how small.

We all avoid things we think we're bad at. It's human nature. And when we feel dumb at something, someone pointing out our shortcomings just exacerbates the problem. Not that you are at fault in any way, but it's all about the perception of the kid,and kids that age aren't known for their wisdom.

I'd just try loving on her a holy ton and see if it helps. It can't hurt!

Hugs!
Thank you for your kind words and heartfelt advice. Things have improved a bit this week. We're spending more one-on-one time together and I've made a point to make a bigger deal over her successes.

I truly appreciate your insights.
 
Top