Princess, Jak and I are having some little difficulty with Princess’ 5th grade teacher. The nicest words I’ve heard used to describe her here at the Lair is “hide bound.” Princess’ grades are in the toilet. However, if Princess were the only kid having trouble with this particular teacher (hereinafter referred to as Ms D) we’d probably be riding her like the proverbial wild horse. We met some people at our new gym recently who have had a similar experience with her. She assured us that when she went into middle school, things got easier. Ms D, on the other hand, insists that Princess’ inability to complete her assignments on time will make middle school harder. It’s not that Princess hates her teacher. On the contrary, she loves her dearly. The trouble Princess is having with her is her attitude. Then again, judging from the comments we received in Princess’ latest progress report, Ms D isn’t that happy with Princess’ attitude either.
For as long as I’ve known her, Princess has been constitutionally incapable of accepting “because I said so” as a reason to change her behavior. Nope. She has to have a good reason, one she can understand and that makes sense to her. So, quite often, a grown person can tell Princess, “Do it this way,” and Princess will go ahead and just do it her own way as if she didn’t even hear the directions or they didn’t really matter to her.
So, yesterday, I sat down with Princess and reminded her of how we’d discussed the fact that Ms D is “spiritually” Princess’ sister. Having Princess refuse to follow directions, I said, may make Ms D feel like she’s failing as a teacher. If Princess loves Ms D as a sister, she should probably do everything she can to help Ms D feel like she’s succeeding. This means that she should probably follow directions first and ask why later (assuming that, by following directions, she doesn’t already understand why).
We’d have tried this at school today except Princess spent a good deal of last night talking to God on the big white telephone and had to stay home. Meanwhile, Jak is looking toward getting Princess a “504” which would, as I understand it, provide directions to Ms D on how Princess should be handled. I’m hoping that this won’t somehow alienate Ms D against us. Any prayers in our behalf and Princess’ at this point would be welcome.