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My 10-year-old daughter is smart, but seems so scattered! She doesn't keep proper track of her homework and school projects — even though she has an agenda and regular reminders from both her teacher and me. Should I continue to remind her and check up on her, or let her fall behind in the hope that this will teach her to be more organized?


James Crist Replied: If she is having ongoing difficulties with organization, it is possible that she may have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Is the problem only with school, or in other areas as well such as keeping track of home responsibilities? Letting her fall behind isn't likely to motivate her to do better if she is trying but unable to succeed at staying organized. Do your reminders help? If so, and she is not resentful of them, I would continue to do so. Incentives to stay more organized are more likely to succeed than waiting for her to fail. You may want to talk with her guidance counselor and teacher to see if further evaluation is warranted.
Posted On 2008-03-25 22:55:41
Jack Marcellus Replied: I would not suggest allowing her to fall behind as a lesson. Try a fun way of showing her the power of project planning. Perhaps two examples-one very well planned and successful and one not so well planned and a failure. She's only ten, but a non-academic example may take the negativity out of the picture and more clearly illustrate your point.
Posted On 2008-03-21 16:55:42
D. Kristine Manley Replied: I know the feeling. It's so tempting to allow her to fall behind, but I know that's not what you want for her, so I recommend you continue with the check ups and little reminders. There is something that can help remind her of work that needs to be done: Purchase your daughter two plastic crates - one red (means work that needs completion) and one green (work that has been completed). Everyday when she comes home from school have her place all work (homework and special projects, etc.) that she is to complete in the red crate. This will definitely remind both of you that if you see some papers, folders, etc. in that red crate, there is work to be done. When your daughter completes her assignments have her place them in the green crate. I know this sounds simple, but don't we as adults have bins at work that we use to remind us of work we need to complete and of work we have completed? Try this simple method; let her know that even adults us this method at work, but most of our bins are black (SMILE). Also, if your daughter does not have this already, help her create weekly sheets which outline dates assingments are received, dates when assignments are due, teacher, and subject/assignment; also have a column for her to check off or place a star for completions. I recommend placing this sheet on the refrigerator or somewhere you and she will encounter that sheet quite often. Best to you and your very bright and precious daughter!
Posted On 2008-03-16 19:14:02
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