“I hate school” or “I do not want to go to school” are perhaps one of those big issues that are faced by many parents around the globe. A child’s refusal to go to a school generally ends up being a fight for power, which is neither necessary nor recommended. Every now and then, a child could want to skip a day or two of school, and that is nothing to be worried about. However, if this refusal is a regular affair, then as parents, you must look at the situation closely and find out the root of the problem – thus arriving on a solution that has a long term effect.
Reasons Your Kid Could Hate Going To School:
More often than not, a child could refuse to go to school because of the following reasons –
- He does not find the education/information given at the school as ‘interesting’, and thus he does not get engaged with the classes.
- He has not been doing well at academics, and constant bad grades are affecting him.
- He gets bullied at school, has had a physical attack or has been punished constantly in school, and so he wishes not to be there at all.
- The child needs individual attention and the school staff cannot meet his individual needs – ODD, learning disability, gifted child).
- He feels socially left out or disconnected at the school. He is not able to gel-up well with his peers or is not accustomed to his school environment.
- He suffers from separation anxiety, or some issues at home, inculcating insecure and negative feelings in them.
In the event such reasons then let your child be given some time to adjust. However, if he consistently makes this remark of hating school then you need to be cautious and give some extra attention on this issue. The first and foremost thing is to make your child open upto you. Sit him down calmly, let him share his feelings and confide in you and you may have an idea of what is happening in yours child’s school life.
How Can I Make My Child Open Upto Me?
You can expect your child to share his feelings and fears with you only if you make a comfortable surrounding for him. Frequent battles of power will do him more harm then good, and this refusal to go to school could turn complex – with many dynamics getting on at play. Always remember, it is not a fight and you do not have to be a “
“winner” – you need to act in a well-planned effective way – one that solves your issue amicably.
• Feel emotionally attached with him and let him express his dislike, fear or hatred pertaining to school.
• Inculcate a sense of closeness in him by cuddling, showering physical affection and listening patiently to his matters.
• Never jump to conclusions and do not straightaway march to charge the Teachers or his peers or their parents. You need to understand things from your child’s perspective.
• Keep his mind busy in productive things be it sports, crafts, games or studies. This will help him divert his mind from his separation from the parents or other bad memory.
• Never make him feel that you are interfering – let him decide when and what he wants to talk to you. You can never get a kid talking by force.
What Can I Do As A Parent?
Many parents spend endless nights worrying about their children’s constant refusal to go to school. Each morning becomes a struggle and a battle of wills – making both sides frustrated and on the losing end. The following pointers can be helpful to you-
• Get To The Heart Of The Matter – Well, if your child has spoken to you, and you know the issues, you are at a good position – else get on having a one-on-one conversation with your child.
• Meet Your Child’s Teachers – Teachers are the best source to solicit your child’s academic and sports information. As they hold great expertise in handling students and knowing the reasons why students don’t turn up to schools, discussing will let them direct their attention more towards your child. This can help your children from escaping common problems like bullying or the inability to understand of a subject or learning difficulties.
• Talk To Other Parents- Make friends with other parents having children of same age like yours. Catch up in the park, plan out a dinner, and go on picnics. Each time you meet with other parents, observe their children’s behavior, persona and communication skills. Spend some time with them and understand where your children lack, why there is a gap, and what best can be done with them in school or at home.
• Use Positive Incentives and Be Supportive – The power of awards and incentives is superbly amazing and works pretty well with kids. Recognizing your baby’s progress is essential, you need to appreciate the little one’s efforts even if they are baby steps.
• Work On Solutions At Both Home and School – Simple and positive little things can make a lot of difference – providing your child a healthy environment, calling your child once (with permission from the school) to ease his separation anxiety, addressing bullying issues, making him work hard on his grades etc are some time and tested steps. These will not only make your child not go awry on the mention of a school, but will make up for a solid foundation.
One Note – Sometimes, parents fail and refuse to identify ODD, or learning disabilities in children and this puts additional pressure on them. In case all the above methods fail, and you see your child’s academic graph going down, it is best to get your child some support for special needs.