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Too much pressure

Avasmom

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Jan 31, 2015
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My daughter started middle school this year. She's a type A personality and has always been an all A student even though she has dyslexia. She's in all advanced classes which I advised against and goes to gym 4 days a week for 3.5 hours and we have a 30 min drive back and forth so she has about an hour a day to do homework before gym. She knows her schedule is tough so she tries hard to finish homework at school or on the weekends but sometimes assignments happen during the week. The past 2 weeks she has really struggled after practice because she has so much homework or she is too tired to study. I told her school comes first and maybe she needs to take a day or two off when she has too much homework. She just says, no way mom it's meet season.

I think she's putting too much pressure on herself to get it all done. She is giving up trying out for a role in the school play and drama club because it will interfere with gymnastics. At what point do I intervene and make her take a day off or suggest she try out for a part she really wants. For those of you who chose homeschooling at what point did you decide that your child needed that? After state in December her hours increase to 5 days a week.
 

Cheryl

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Feb 28, 2018
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The first month back is always the toughest. Eventually they adapt, you adapt and create your schedule. All the parents I’ve talked with this week have time management issues. I quizzed my kid on vocabulary words and Spanish tenses in the car this week (we too have a 40 minute commute). The kids in the carpool have all studied at some point in the car. I also think almost every boy has missed at least one practice for school reasons. They are tired, cranky and stressed. They will also probably have gotten over the hump pretty soon. Seems almost universal for middle schoolers and up, but they manage to work it out.
 

ldw4mlo

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Feb 13, 2015
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I would intervene now. But I’m a sneaky mom. :cool:

So I would sit down with her and there is a,b,cd, on deck and you need to realistically plan what you can do

Mine is in 8th grade, 3 HS classes, gym and “other”.
There have been weeks where she misses a day of gym. Weeks where she gets to a school thing late.

This week is a school holiday, we offered her a gym day off. She has a school trip and an orchestra thing that will require a miss at gym. She has decided going to gym on the holiday is something she needs to do.


My long winded way of saying help her work it out. Plot it, plan it, decide where things have to go
 
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Aussie_coach

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I would avoid saying “school comes first” to child like yours. If she is a type A personality and the type of kid who has managed straight A’s despite a learning disability, and she puts a lot of pressure on herself. She will most likely push herself harder than you will ever need to push her.

Parents saying these things, can really add to the stress she feels, because it may make her think that if she does not keep her grades perfect you will take away the things she loves, or that she is letting you down if she ever slips up. At the end of the day school is important but not at the cost of a healthy, happy, well rounded human being.

The choice to home school is a very individual one. And very hard to compare one child’s journey to another. The way your child learns in very important. Is she in an independent learner or does she absorb information better in a teacher directed or social environment. The later would be better off in school, while the earlier May benefit from homeschooling. Is she a visual leaner? A lot of homeschool work will be visual and will be harder for kids who are auditory or kinaesthetic learners. Does she enjoy school? Does she love to be with her friends, or could she take it or leave it.
 

Madden3

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For those of you who chose homeschooling at what point did you decide that your child needed that?
In our case, the decision to homeschool came when it was a better option than school-school. Not a perfect option, but better for a number of reasons. There were many other reasons aside gymnastics to homeschool. Gymnastics was not even part of the rationale at first. But homeschooling DID help a ton in reducing that time stress. Now that my one son (7th grade) who still does gymnastics is back school-schooling, he is really feeling that time stress again. Even though his teacher assigns only very light amounts of homework.

However, one thing homeschooling did not really help as much as you might expect is with the opportunity to do other extracurricular things. Most kids activities, including theater groups, service clubs, piano lessons etc. happen the same time most gym practice happens. After traditional school hours. In some cases there are opportunities to do these things during school hours with other homeschoolers, but I live in an area with lots of homeschoolers and programs for homeschoolers and even so, most things my kids wanted to do that were extracurricular happened after school hours. So in order to participate, they still had to miss practice occasionally.
 

suebee

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Dec 6, 2012
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I empathize. My dd is also adjusting to middle school, is a perfectionist about school work, and dealing with 24 hours/week in the gym. It’s been ugly around here. She says she doesn’t want to miss gym, including going late or leaving early, and her solution is to sleep less and do homework later at night, but she is already showing the effects of her schedule weighing down on her and I don’t think sleeping less is the right solution.

She is efficient at HW and good with time management but she goes to an academically rigorous school.

I recently put my mom foot down and made her skip gym one day when she was just swamped with homework and losing her mind. The mental health day did her wonders. But she was extremely angry for a while and felt like missing gym was a punishment.

I find it difficult at this age to figure out how much to let them decide on their own and when I need to step in and decide if they’re making bad (but not life threatening) decisions. She is not even my oldest but my others were not quite like this.
 

Lilou

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This sounds familiar to us. My daughter talked to her coach about balancing it all and the coach suggested taking one night off to get as much done as possible. This way it did not come from me, but the coach. The person she seeks approval in gymnastics from anyway.
 

thefellowsmom

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My dd has been on a modified school schedule since fourth grade. She is now a Sophmore in high school. In middle and high school she has always taken her core classes at school and then supplemented with online school (laurel springs).

We have a 50 minute commute to gym. She gets out of school a little before 1 and she has almost 2 hours at home in between. I also have to drop her at gym early a few days a week to accommodate my other child’s sport schedule. She has plenty of time for homework and on almost all days comes home from gym, chills and eats and showers and goes to bed getting almost 8 hours of sleep a night.

This has been the right balance for her. She is very intense, gets straight A’s taking all challenging classes etc and is very serious about her gymnastics. She has never blinked at making sacrifices. But there is no way she could handle going straight from school to gym and then home to do homework and then bed at midnight. She would last like two days like that before she was a complete basket case.

Talk to her and see what she wants. She is old enough to decide what sacrifices she is willing to make for gymnastics and what balance she needs in her life. Look at her day and see where you can build in release valves for her. I guess I view it as I let her lead on what she wants and then I do everything I can to facilitate as much sanity in that as I can.

School and gymnastics can both be top priorities you just have to find the right fit and the right balance for your individual child.
 

Muddlethru

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I always worried my kids were also putting too much pressure on themselves. The advantage, but also potentially grave disadvantage, with having 4 kids pretty close in age and hectic school and sports schedules, I did not get the opportunity of monitoring them too closely. Nonetheless, three of my four kids (my youngest is still in middle school) graduated with 11-13 AP classes with a GPAs of 98 to over 100 (weighted of course) and are in Ivy and Ivy caliber universities, whilst participating in a variety of highly competitive sports. Outside of the occasional short pep talks or reminders not to put too much pressure on themselves and that I am fine if they decide to lighten their load, I did not intervene. It’s worked for me but each child is different.
 

Eat/Sleep/Gym...Repeat

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In our case, the decision to homeschool came when it was a better option than school-school. Not a perfect option, but better for a number of reasons. There were many other reasons aside gymnastics to homeschool. Gymnastics was not even part of the rationale at first.

However, one thing homeschooling did not really help as much as you might expect is with the opportunity to do other extracurricular things.
Homeschooling actually came before gymnastics for us, but has been very helpful in maintaining mental health and sleep. We live in a very homeschool and alternative school friendly state and there are MANY options. We also know “child actors” who are “virtual schooled”

I agree that homeschooling with gymnastics (at higher levels) really doesn’t free up too much extra time for other extra curricular activities, but it is certainly helpful when travel for competitions comes around.
 

gracegymnastics

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Oct 25, 2019
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My daughter started middle school this year. She's a type A personality and has always been an all A student even though she has dyslexia. She's in all advanced classes which I advised against and goes to gym 4 days a week for 3.5 hours and we have a 30 min drive back and forth so she has about an hour a day to do homework before gym. She knows her schedule is tough so she tries hard to finish homework at school or on the weekends but sometimes assignments happen during the week. The past 2 weeks she has really struggled after practice because she has so much homework or she is too tired to study. I told her school comes first and maybe she needs to take a day or two off when she has too much homework. She just says, no way mom it's meet season.

I think she's putting too much pressure on herself to get it all done. She is giving up trying out for a role in the school play and drama club because it will interfere with gymnastics. At what point do I intervene and make her take a day off or suggest she try out for a part she really wants. For those of you who chose homeschooling at what point did you decide that your child needed that? After state in December her hours increase to 5 days a week.
My DD is 7 and she balances it okay right now. School to gym to homework to bed. Every night, same thing over and over. Thursdays she gets tired and is ready for a break.At what age do we need to step in and make the decisions for them? At what age do they understand and can make the choices for themselves?
 

InbarSquirrel

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Jan 28, 2013
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Try to work with the coach about taking a night off or reducing workout hours.

Coming from a parent who has used online school for my kids over the past ten years to this fall having all of my children in public school... Keep her in a brick & mortar school unless you participate in a homeschool co-op. Online schooling was a must for our household due to living in a area of the city that's going through gentrification.
It wasn't until a few weeks ago at my 12 yr old's teacher conference at school that her teachers explained the only thing my DD was lacking was public speaking skills and they could see she has zero confidence because of it. The lack of public speaking played into her gymnastics performance too. I did socialize my children very much during their online schooling years but there's something to say about having to read books reports & stuff in front of an entire class - it truly builds character/confidence.

As the kids become adults - the gymnastics will fade only the memories and education last.
 
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