There is a direct correlation between a child’s school behavior and his/her ability to listen, learn, stay on task and complete their work. First graders act like first graders. They should! These young children are only 6 and 7 years old. What a parent has to remember is that children who know when to stop, look and listen to teachers at school, are also the same children who can complete work without direct teacher guidance. In most classrooms, the first grade teacher is instructing small groups of children while the remainder of the class is working on their own. Children working may chit chat a little, but most can easily get themselves back on track to do their work. In every classroom there are always a few children who just can’t motivate themselves to not only get started but stay on task once they do start. These children are looking around the room at what others are doing, watching the teacher, staring out the window, cutting their pencils, gluing their fingers, cutting their work paper, etc. Something is not right. Teachers try and tell parents when they notice that their child is struggling with work and behavior, but most times, parents do not want to listen. They haven’t seen it at home is the usual excuse. Really? Invite 23 more 6 and 7 year old kids to your house, try to manage all of their behavior and then in the middle of this, watch your child try and stay on task. Then, and only then would you would be see what we see each and every day at school. Our interims for this quarter just went home and parents sometimes do not like what they see regarding not only behavior but academic progress as well. Keep in mind that teachers are not miracle workers and we cannot ‘fix’ children who misbehave. Take a good hard look at your child’s behavior the next time a behavior note comes home, or the teacher contacts you about your child’s behavior at school. If a teacher takes the time to write, or have the child write a note, then something needs to be addressed. Children who misbehave by the minute, hourly or daily eventually fall behind in their school work and mid-December is when you will start hearing that from the classroom teacher. Do you want your child to fall further and further behind, or are you willing to get to the root of the problem, support your child’s education and talk to additional professionals if need be. Only you can make that decision.