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KarateMom November 4th, 2006 11:58 AM

Does anyone here have a child who is a perfectionist? How do you deal with it?
Yesterday, I had a spelling quiz for Reilly, using words that we had been working on for the week. When we were checking the quiz, she was happy and content UNTIL she got to the first word that she missed...then she got angry, her eyes filled with tears, and she began to pout - "I don't like school! I don't like quizzes!" etc, etc. I had her write each missed word 10 times (she only missed 2) and it was a BATTLE! (I know, I know, pick your battles...I'll admit, I didn't choose wisely!)

Now, here's what my husband and I discussed: There's really no reason for her to sit down and write the missed words over and over and over - there are many more fun ways to reinforce the missed words. I'm not sure that "spelling" is absolutely necessary, really. I think I've started it "because that's what they do in school", and I don't know if that's a valid reason.

My main question for all of my wise friends is how to deal with perfectionism as a whole. I see it in her in areas other than school - tying her shoes, for example - where she gets SO frustrated when she can't do something perfectly and she wants to quit.
Any hints? :confused:

Miguelsmommy November 4th, 2006 09:17 PM

Theres a game at http://www.leapfrog.com/do/findproduct?age...;key=ttspelling that teaches spelling. Miguel's like that so I try not to grade anything around him acually I try correcting lightly and use games and other activities a lot. He takes corrections better from the computer then me.

JustAKrazymom November 5th, 2006 06:33 AM

I have a perfectionist too.. but he's only 4.5 so we haven't yet gotten to that stage..but I can't wait...LOL

MissyPrincessEha November 5th, 2006 01:19 PM

Well, I do teach spelling.
The day after a "test" I call out each word with a sentence and he spells it. If he gets it wrong I tell him to try again as I write it on the board. So say for instance if the work is braid, and he said braed...then I write bra and ask him what would make the a say a....what is the special sound for ai as in braid. I then remind him that e usually comes at the end of the word. And he remembers that it is ai and then I write braid.

We go over them everyday if need be. And focus on the ones he had trouble with the most.

Each day he writes 5 of his spelling words.

"Test" day I give him his sheet and he writes what he thinks. He knows his grade...but he also knows that he knew the right way but that sometimes we mess up. And that is okay. I remind him that getting something wrong is how we learn something well and remember it!

My SIL was not a good test taker emotionally. She likes school but test her and she hates it. Her mother took all tests away. Ya know, you don't have to test her. I know pretty much from just our fun reviews and fast reviews what he knows. Ya know? The test is just another sheet. It isn't a big deal. HUGS!

Motherbird November 5th, 2006 03:40 PM

My 10 yr old gets really upset if he misses anything on a spelling test. He wants a perfect score every time and has broken into tears over it. I always tell him that it's not a big deal and that he should try not to get so upset, but he is an emotional kind of guy. I do think Spelling is important and that most adults should be able to spell reasonably well. But I don't make a big thing of it in school. And yet he still gets so upset. Some kids are just perfectionists and I don't think there's much we can do about it. I've always been a bit of one myself and I'm sure my parents or teachers couldnt have talked me out of it, they just knew I'd be more sensitive about some things.

KarateMom November 6th, 2006 07:10 PM

Thanks for all the advice! I didn't make a spelling list for this week, and we're on vacation for most of next week (and THEN it's Thanksgiving!) so I'll probably pick it up again in a few weeks. I also feel that spelling is pretty important, but I think that, for her, I need to go about it in more of a roundabout way. I always try to be willing to help her spell things when she's writing, too.

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