Thursday, December 4, 2008

Don't Go There--A Verybusymomwith4 Lecture

Sarah usually breezes through her classes. She's quick and nothing has given this second grader much trouble until she began literature vocabulary this last month. The book has words like colonades and procure. And she has been getting quized on the words. The first time around, she didn't do too great so for the second time, I made mock quizes, stuff I do all the time for Miley, and drilled the words daily. She got a perfect on the test.

Yesterday we began to study the vocab for test three. She said she was ready and she took the mock test--a perfect 100. I was surprised since we spent such little time but didn't take it much further and we went on with the day's subjects. 

Later in the evening, I gave her a quick mock quiz just to double check everything. She did not know a single word. I asked what happened and she explained she was just tired and not in the mood. I was tired. I wanted to believe her so I did. That was my mistake.

The next morning during breakfast, I began to go over the words. She knew nothing. I asked how she knew everything yesterday. She gave me some lame excuses but long story short--she cheated and she lied.

Two very very bad things to do in the very busy household. Two of the things I do not accept. Ever.

She will be punished. Part of her punishment will of course be natural consequences--she will fail. Call me a horrible mother but I think failing is a positve thing when you are young because you aren't really failing--you are merely learning that this way does not work. Not studying for a test does not work. Cheating does not work. I'd like her to learn this before high school and college.

And when she gets home today, she will get one of my famous lectures. Then she gets to write a fifity word 'essay' on the importance of doing your work plus a fifty word 'essay' on the value of the truth. 

The cheating I have every intention of nipping in the bud. We. do. not. cheat. It only hurts you in the long run. 

The lying is harder to keep under control. I have always had the stance if you tell the truth about something wrong you did, you will be punished far less than if you lie. Because I will always know if there is a lie. Always. This has worked for the most part but every now and then something happens and I come down on them. Like a hammer. 

As a mom, there are some behaviors and attitudes I do not put up with. I know in these times, there has been the notion to let kids slide and let them be kids. A perfect example is the parents who are suing the school board because their daughters took nude pictures of themselves and sent them out via a text message. These are parents who do not believe their children can do any wrong. And I wish I could say this is unusual but I have personally met parents with the same feelings. Parents who feel the need to complain if their child gets anything less than an A (the teacher has it out for her or the teacher is not getting the subject across--never maybe my child is not doing well and deserves the grade).  

There is a fine line between adoration of your children and blind belief your child can walk on water.

I am not raising kids. I am raising future adults. Adults that are productive members of society. This is my job. Sure I want them to have fun. I want to have fun with them but first and foremost I am the mother. Period.

At this point of the lecture, I send the girls to their desks for their essays but I won't do that to you--unless you are the parent of a girl whol likes to send nude pics of herself to her boyfriend (but accidently sends it to the whole football team) and you think it's the school's fault;)


Lisa@verybusymomwith4 said...

I hope I did not sound too cruel in this--I am just extrememly upset with what Sarah pulled--blogging is my therepy! said...

I think you are doing exactly right. As a former teacher, I esp applaud you letting her fail, because if we don't fail, how to we value and grow from success? I had so many parents who would come in after progress reports and blame me for a child who was failing - Uh what? Hardly. I'm a strict parent, too - and I wish the majority of people our age were. I fear what these enabled children who have never been taught consequences will do when they are controlling the economy and our retirement - oh, wait, we're already there, cause our parents' generation spoiled a bit too much....

Amanda said...

I strongly agree that parents can't be buddies with their kids.
It's unfortunate that a lot of parents to take this view and as a result you can see the way the kids are turning out.
You are not being cruel ~ but i might take the essay punishment idea of you!
Hope things settle down.
Amanda x

Momo Fali said...

We go so far as to say that if you tell the truth, you won't get punished AT ALL. Even if it's bad. I want to set it up so that when my kids are teenagers and they have to make choices that could be life or death (getting in a car with someone who has been drinking, for instance) that they will know they would never get in trouble for calling me. But, lying...whoo boy, I won't tolerate it. I think you've handled this perfectly. I like your style!

The White House said...

Great for you! Don't apologize and don't look back. I commend you for doing your job as a parent and raising honorable, truthful, productive adults!

Elaine A. said...

I cheated once. And only once. I hate to admit it but it's true.

This is a good lesson for her to learn early. You're such a good mom. : )

EatPlayLove said...

ooh, hard one. I think letting your daughter get away with the behavior would be condoning it! Well done mom.

Jules from "The Roost" said...

You are SO doing the right thing! Keep up those standards and you will raise well adjust adults. Lying and cheating get them No where contrary to what the world tells them. Keep up the good work mom!

dani said...

i don't stand for lying, either, lisa!!! good for you:)

Brian and Staci said...

AGREED my friend...AGREED! And that's all I'll say about THAT! (NO WAY are you being too cruel!) I hope all goes well this afternoon :)

Carrie Thompson said...

I think you absolutely did the right thing! I know you dont need me to say it is okay but I just wanted to let you know other moms feel that way too! It is hard but it is neccesary! Moms who dont try to be best friends, moms who actually raise their children, moms who teach and train their children. Those are moms! Anyone else is bascially babysitting!

Texan Mama @ Who Put Me In Charge said...

Yay for you. It is a good lesson. And Yay for Sarah - that she is lucky enough to have a person in her life who knows it's more loving to correct her and help her grow than to ignore her bad habits.

And, you're good to tell them they will be punished far less if they tell the truth than if they lie. I've always done: "if you tell the truth you won't get in trouble" and sometimes I regret that because they DO need a punishment, I'm just relieved they told the truth. But my kids are getting old enough now that I think I can amend it!

HappyHourSue said...

I couldn't agree with you more - I keep reading about employers who are shocked at the work ethic of the new generation - they just feel all entitled and lazy and non-motivated because their parents let them get away with everything and never experienced consequences. Go, Mom!

Jackie @ Our Moments Our Memories said...

You absolutley did NOT sound cruel. I think you handled it the way it needs to be handled, and I love the statement that "kids need to fail sometimes". Amen and amen. That's what real life is all about sometimes, and if they don't learn it when they're young, it will just mean more heartache later on. Good for you.

Carol said...

Can I just applaud you for being such a responsible parent.

Totally Inspirational.

If more parents were like you society would be a far improved place.

Anonymous said...


(I totally agree)

OHmommy said...

I agree... do NOT apologize. I have to agree with you and everyone you are being a responsible parent. There should be more of you! Yay!

CC said...

Oh no. I'd be mad as heck too.

and re: parents that think their kids can do no wrong... GRRRRRRRR!!!!! That is part of the reason I went to the school that I did (less of this). But still we get it here. What do you want me to do that my son kicks, hits, and runs out of the room every few hours? He's just a 5 year old. Bwhahahaha!