Nov 29, 2009
Resistance to learning is when an individual, who is supposed to have learned something, didn’t learn it, and now refuses to learn it.
What causes students to resist learning?
Just as there is often a resistance to change, there can also be a resistance to learning.
- Lack of motivation
- Lack of ability
- Lack of maturity
- Lack of aptitude
- Poor teaching
- Environmental issues
- Physical (such as poor eyesight)
A caller asked, “my son hates school (4th grade), it doesn’t matter what we do, we’ve tried giving him privileges and then taking them away, we give him money for good grades, we’ve punished him, he just can’t do the work, and the constant struggle gets to him.” Any suggestions would be appreciated.
I was thinking of the word manipulation when I heard this question; kids know when they are being manipulated. If you give a privilege to take it away, they know. Often they are smarter than we are; the caller said, “the constant struggle gets to him.” It would me too. Don’t educators get it? IT SHOULD NOT BE A CONSTANT STRUGGLE! And we all really freaked out at the word punishment. Once resistance has reached this level of intensity, the parent or teacher will need to be patient to undo all this damage. Get help! Throw the poor boy a life-line. I wish I could come off this page and be his teacher!
A caller asked, “I never did well with Math, is there a risk that I might pass that dislike to my children? I currently home school them.”
There is no guarantee that God has given your child the same gifts and aptitudes that He has given you. There is always a risk that you might pass some habit-good or bad-to your offspring, but don’t let that keep you from homeschooling.
A caller asked, “I have adopted three children from troubled backgrounds, I don’t know if they have a resistance to learning, or if they just aren’t capable, is there a way I can tell?”
You can tell a great deal by spending time with the child, the time factor is difficult when you have a lot of children. But time has a most magnificent way of helping us figure things out. I like to watch children on playgrounds. My diagnosis, based on their actions and play in this natural environment, is almost 100% accurate. Children who come from troubled backgrounds will have trauma and grief that goes beyond their coping abilities. There could be some physiological problems as well. Two basic tests that I do when a parent asks me if their child might have a learning disability is this:
- Can your child speak? If the child can speak they are obviously intelligent because they have learned a foreign languagem—get it?
- Have the child touch each finger to their corresponding thumb. This simple test quickly lets you know if there are any neurological deficiencies. If there are neurological deficiencies the child won’t be able to do it.
Even if your child has neurological problems, your child is still wonderful and has gifts to give. Take courage and focus on the positive. Have a wonderful time learning!
The Homeschool Companion radio talk show that broadcasts every Wednesday at 11:00 am ET, at http://www.myhomeschoolcompanion.com took on the topic of Resistance to Learning, this article is a synthesis of the questions from listeners, and the answers from Candy DeVore, editor of Kids’ Ministry Ideas magazine, Dr. Alayne Thorpe, VP of Education for Griggs University, Dr. Rose Gamblin, education specialist, and Kalvin Follett, the voice of common sense.