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The dark side of coasting through school

Sandra’s son Chris had always done fine in school. He hated writing and English (thought he was “bad” at it) but otherwise got pretty good grades. Sandra knew Chris had a bright future awaiting him, starting with him getting in to his first choice universities.

You can perhaps imagine her concern when Chris hit Grade 11 and his grades started to drop. And kept dropping. It dawned on Sandra that Chris had sailed through school mostly on his natural smarts, but didn’t actually know what to do when things got hard.

He had no system for getting or staying organized. No matter what she said or tried to do to help, nothing stuck.

Even as his grades dropped, Chris continued to feel pretty confident in most of his subjects – after years of thinking he was “good” at most of his subjects, he’d never learned how to actually study.

Doing worse on his homework and tests made him less interested in spending time on them. He started to check out of school and his once (mostly) healthy video game hobby turned into playing for hours every day after school.

Sandra was worried about his well-being. And she realized he didn’t have the skills he would need for college – or even to get into the colleges he dreamed of – and went into full panic mode. Chris’ marks were scattered but mostly in the 70s. Chris and Sandra both knew that he needed to bring his marks up to an 85% average to be considered by his top choice colleges. But neither of them knew how.

They needed a practical plan for him to get back on track with school. And they wanted a clear road map for putting his best foot forward on his university applications.

Above all else, Sandra wanted to help him without adding pressure; she didn’t want to crush his already-suffering sunny disposition.

This was the situation when Sandra reached out, except there was one other unique difficulty – Sandra was living out of the country for work at the time. She’d been flying between Asia and North America with increased frequency as what started as a few slipped grades spiralled out of control.

So we put our heads together and put into motion our plan for Chris, centred on building out the skills he’d need for college and improving his grades, while reigniting his interest in school and learning.

Our first week working together, Chris gave a decent chunk of gaming time over to (voluntarily) reading for leisure.

Soon thereafter, he brought home an 83% on an in-class English essay (his last one had been a 68%).

Then he earned 95% on an English presentation.

And the wins kept coming.

Chris worked his way up to a 90% overall average (an A+ in Canada where he goes to school), well above what he and Sandra had even hoped for initially. As of today, he’s earned offers of admission to each of his top choice colleges and is excited to absolutely crush the rest of high school.

But more important than grades and even college offers? Sandra was over the moon with how much confidence Chris gained in himself, and said that she could feel the joy seeping back into his life.

So here’s the bottom line:

  • Grades are not an indicator of your kids’ preparedness for college. Just because your kids are getting good grades does not mean they KNOW how to get good grades. It doesn’t meant they’re learning. There’s a right way and a wrong way of getting good grades; most kids do the latter but all can master the former.
  • No kids are “bad” at writing or math or what have you, even (and often especially) the ones who are absolutely convinced of it; they’ve just never been shown how to do it properly.
  • School work doesn’t have to be a chore; framed properly, it can be something they’re actually interested in doing, something that stimulates genuine personal and intellectual growth.

The truth is that if you’re resolved on helping your kids reach their potential in and through school….and if they wish they could feel more confident and in control with school than they do right now…

…then we can give you the step-by-step game plan to make it happen.

Book a call and let’s talk. We’ll get on the phone for about 45 minutes and do a deep dive into your situation.

We’ll get you clear on:

  • What’s causing their struggles with school
  • How to leverage their strengths and bridge their gaps
  • And the exact next steps to get them getting the grades and building the skills that they (and you) are happy about.

I know this might seem like a tall order, especially if even having (or trying to have) conversations about school can turn into a full-blown fight.

If that’s what you’re thinking, I have good news: getting your kids to feel more confident and in control with school is simpler than you might think. And once they realize that they can get better grades without all the stress – that there’s actually a better way of doing school, from high school to college and beyond – their expectations of themselves go up and the sky is the limit from there.

The peace of mind and relief that comes from this is all there for you. You just need the strategy and the support to make it happen.

Let us help. Book a call here. Let’s see how far we can take your kids in conquering their school work and embracing their very best self as a lifelong learner.

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Clarity is power, and that's what we want for you: a crystal clear road map for your students to hit their academic goals while learning the skills they'll actually need to thrive in college and their career.

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