Some moms are worried that their smart child is going to get bored in school. And, that this boredom will lead to naughty behavior. This is within the realm of possibility. Do these things to avoid this outcome:
A reader I recently spoke to had a great comment concerning preparing her toddler (now 2) for preschool and school, and a secret fear she was harboring.
“I want to prepare my son for preschool and school and teach him a lot of things, but
I am worried that if I do that he’ll go and be bored and naughty. My mom always
said the naughtiest kids were the ones who were very smart and bored at school.”
Ahhh… I think her mother is often right.
The naughiest kids may well be some of the smartest and the most bored. But does that mean your smart child will necessarily be naughty?
Does it mean that preparing them in advance will just set them up to have behavior issues at school?
Let’s think on this…
In just 15 minutes a night (while you’re in your pajamas!) take your home (and heart and mind) from stressed out to organized.
It’s not necessarily what you’re teaching them, but how you’re teaching them to learn…
Teaching your kids focusing and paying attention skills will pay greater dividends them teaching them how to read early.
Learning the ability to sit still and pay attention is far better than multiplication and Mandarin at age 4.
Children are all able to learn and are like sponges. However, the amount they are able to absorb will greatly depend on how well they can pay attention and focus on what they are supposed to be learning.
Prepare children at home by engaging them in activities and don’t worry too much about the activity itself. Instead, focus on training them to remain in their seat and be patient with what you’re doing.
It’s the same self-control that keeps them from jumping up and down in their dining room chair that helps them stay seated and pay attention to their teacher.
Take our 3 day challenge to create life-giving family, child, and self-care routines.Learn More
Create a strong framework for learning by giving them the tools to be able to absorb and process information. Don’t worry too much if your neighbor’s kids seem to be little geniuses. Children will learn in their own time if they have the tools.
Prepare your smart child for obedience, whether they are bored or not.
It’s not a matter of if they will get bored, it’s when.
So, they are going to face boredom… it’s inevitable. At school, it’s when they finish their work with extra time.
Prepare them for this while they are at home. Training in obedience, self-control, and discipline (even when they are bored) will go a long way in helping prevent naughty behavior at school.
- Requiring them to sit in public when you are busy,
- having them stay beside you for short periods of time at home, and
- reading a book or coloring while you are occupied
… will help show a child that they are able to control their urges.
Also, explain to your children the “rules” of school. Proper explanation and sharing of expectations will go a long way in preparing a child’s mind for what’s to come.
Read: Time In Vs. Time Out … and is Time Out Damaging Kids?
Help prepare your kids for life, one skill at a time. Simple, easy skills every month!Learn More
Shepherd their heart, not just their brain.
I think that in the early years, moral and “heart attitude” training will take a child a lot further than simply teaching them colors or their ABC’s.
Now, don’t get me wrong… I love learning and teaching my children.
However, if I had to pick one I’d pick the heart training.
Heart training is not forcing your child to do what you decide is morally right. It’s living life alongside your child and communicating your values and important life concepts.
Heart training is…
- Using discipline to communicate what attitudes and behaviors are not acceptable (hatred, rebellion, violence, etc.) and
- molding your child’s heart to be one that wants to do the right thing.
- Not as a mindless drone, but as a respectful smart child.
Focus on behaviors that are naughty and train your child to be patient and obedient. Then, find that no matter how quick they pick up on the lesson, they won’t become the class clown or troublemaker.
Communicate with the teacher and train your smart child at home.
As always, just keep abreast of what your smart child is doing.
- If they are finding it hard to concentrate at school, there are plenty of opportunities for you to help them at home.
- If they are finding it hard to finish their work at school, check to see if they are distracted or uninterested.
It is the lessons and skills we give our children at home that enable them to excel and reach success.
They can be the best students and the best behaved, the worst students and the worst behaved, or any combination in the middle.
We definitely shouldn’t be afraid to give them tons of opportunities to soak up knowledge and information as long as we temper and balance it with heart and obedience training.
The fact is, we are far more likely to get in trouble if we’re bored (and this is true for teenagers too, hello).
I used to get in trouble because I would finish my work fast and then try to talk to everyone else who was working. I’d have to go sit alone just so that I would shut up.
Our children may be slower than average, average, or faster than average with their school work and in every other area of life.
Check off critical household, social, and hygiene skills for your child so they’re prepared (not petrified) of growing up!
As parents and mothers all we can really do is to think, strategize, prepare, and train to the best of our ability. After that it’s up to them.
You gave some very good advice. The kindergarten teachers at my school prepare a handout called ” Tips on how to Prepare Your Child to Transition to Kindergarten”. It is simple, yet effective ways, that parents can help prepare their children for the academic setting. One of the tips is teaching your child to “listen well and follow directions”. It affects everything they do. If more parents followed your advice, it might help cut down on student, parent, and teacher stress.
Thank you for the encouragement :)
Amanda Long says
At times I do think the smart kids are more likely to act out. I love what you said about not worrying so much about teaching them but working with them to sit through activities. I never thought of it that way but with that skill everything else follows. I know with my son, he’s 3, we don’t repeat much he’s a huge sponge. As always love your blog posts.
Rachel Norman says
Thanks so much, Amanda. I do think to a certain extent more bright children can be bored at school and therefore act out, that’s a good point. I guess that’s why it’s so important we actually focus on teaching them to focus, be quiet when they need to, and have self-control. And YES you are right, particularly if they are smart we needn’t worry they won’t be able to pick up on something. We just need them to sit still long enough to do that. Ha!
My daughter isn’t advanced, but she still finds the teaching methods in classrooms boring. I’ll be giving these ideas a try – thank you!
Rachel Norman says
Emma, I think that nowadays with teachers having to “teach to the tests” the classroom just isn’t as creative as it used to be, you know? Many members of my family are in the school system and are frustrated themselves :(
I started having problems with my sons’ socialization skills lately. He is 5 and started kindergarten at a local public school. He maybe advance than his classmates but what he knows was still within kindergarten range..maybe just pages ahead. But lately all I receive are complains about him always shouting and wanting things done his own way and he started becoming violent to his classmates. The worst actually happened right in front of me while I was having a little chit chat with co-parents. I noticed, lately he is always on the alert mode…always thinking ahead even before something ever happened he would just snap and hit classmates. When asked he would say, “I thought she would get my seat”. The last snapping almost got his classmate blind, because he was holding a pencil a pencil and it almost hit her eye. I was so scared literally. I dont know why he is acting like this lately. He is calm at home. But when he is in public he is always frustrated,grumpy, misbehaved and would always throw tantrums. And worst he is 5 and not 3. I don’t know what to do. I’ve been literally scavenging for solutions all over the net and asking help from other moms. I’ve tried almost all kinds of approach. By the way, I also have a 3 month old son who came next to him. I wonder if it has something to do with his actions…
Rachel Norman says
Do you think it could be anxiety?
Worried Mom says
My 4 year old boy is very very smart, he picks up words real fast, he talks like an adult. He problem solves a situation real fast unlike my other boys but he is always so busy being naughty because of boredom. He will climb shelves, roll down the stairs, touch sharp objects even though
its been put somewhere “safe” he manages to get them. He will crack all my eggs, make a mess from something you wouldnt think could even be made a mess, take my phones/ electronics apart, etc…child proof house is not a match for him!
Ive talked to him nicely about it everytime. Ive put him in time out, taken his TV time away, and sadly even spanked his butt so he will learn to be obiedient or control himself!
I am trying to find activities for him so he can put all this energy and smartness to use to and to get him ready for school….I am lost at how to discipline him for school. Hoping someone can share some of their ideas.