Helping Kids That Hate School


The start of the school year is always chaotic and I worry about having the right backpack, school supplies etc. for my kids, but this year I only have one kid to send back, and while it’s easier to get those supplies together, it was much harder to send him off to school. Quinn is such a “roll with the punches” kid but he does not like school. He loves learning but refuses to conform to constraints school put on kids.


Each of my kids have had their own issues, one has add/adhd and fought it. One hated school until high school and then came out of his cocoon and spread his wings and flew. And then there is Quinn, my youngest. He’s funny, outgoing and just fun to be around, that is until school starts. Then he becomes quiet, tired, sullen and unhappy. It really breaks my heart that this fun kid hates school.


I’ve written before that Quinn has a lot of health issues, and because of that misses a lot of school. He works hard to make up his work but he just never quite makes it. Many think they know the answer to his school woes, take away tv, video games, legos and the list goes on but when you have a kid that hates school, is sick and unhappy this just makes the situation worse. I’d also like to add that the child will make toys out of his fingers and I can’t take those away.


No, taking things away isn’t the answer, and while I don’t have a real answer to fixing the whole situation, I can as a mom ensure that my kid is happier. While I’m on my “how” journey I’ve learned a lot about “how NOT” to do things. When you have a child that hates school the answer isn’t to make him unhappy at home too. The answer is to do all you can to help them and make sure that the time they spend at home is as happy as possible, and just maybe it will start spilling over into school.


Some of the the things I’ve decided on for this year is:

  • If he asks for a book, I will move heaven and earth to get it for him but I require him to set aside a half hour of reading time each night to get it.
  • When doing his homework, I require him to do it at the kitchen table where I can watch him and make sure he stays on task.
  • FOOD! My son is 5’11” 110 lbs and only 14. Food is energy and fuel for him and when he’s starting get tired or irritable I push healthy snacks on him. He loves guacamole, hummus, bananas and many other healthy foods that I keep on hand and suggest he has when he starts to get pooped out. I’m finding this gives him a second wind and he starts to function again.
  • I make sure he gets out and spends some energy.  It might be shooting some hoops or a frustrated you have to do two laps around the yard, but I make sure that he gets the blood rushing through him.
  • The kids has to have some fun.  So I try to make sure he gets some time to do things he likes, whether it’s watching some tv or playing with friends on the computer, he needs to have fun daily because he’s a kid.  That said, he doesn’t have to have 8 hours of it and his fun time is limited.
  • He has to go to bed no later than 9 pm. That doesn’t mean start getting ready at 9 it means in bed and lights out. I start pushing him to bed at 8 pm.


When you have a child that doesn’t like school you have to ask them why. Most of the answers I get are that he doesn’t like the teachers. Certain teachers, and some that really should be retired are his problem. Just because people have a degree doesn’t mean that were meant to work with kids. Teachers have a hard job and they have to love it to do it well. The teachers that my son learns the most from aren’t the strict, take no prisoners teachers. They are the teachers that laugh, smile, tease and care about the kids. He wants to do well in these classes.  The teachers that are too strict he has the attitude that he can’t please them so why try.

What kind of school woes do you kids have?

10 comments for “Helping Kids That Hate School

  1. michele soyer
    September 10, 2016 at 10:31 am

    I think that the answer in why children do not like school is in the question.. you must ask the child why and not come up with your own explanation….it could be one single reason or a multitude of reasons.. Ask them and they shall tell you…

  2. Dotty J Boucher
    September 10, 2016 at 7:24 pm

    I know lots of children that don’t want to go to school, sometimes its because they don’t have proper clothing and get made fun of, or the proper tools to attend school, or they have’nt eaten enough to stay alert in classes, or that their teacher isn’t make the effort to make class exciting for the students,, There are so many reason among the ones I just wrote here , sometimes just boredom..

  3. September 10, 2016 at 11:00 pm

    He loves the social aspect of school and he loves to read at home but he constantly complains about some of the teachers. He’s a slow eater too and they only have 25 minutes for lunch that’s to get to the lunch room, find a seat, eat and get to class. If he has to buy lunch or a drink he said he can’t get to class on time and has skipped lunch when he thought he couldn’t get through the line on time. This really makes me mad.

  4. Kimberly Bauer
    September 14, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    My 12 year old daughter has never liked school and never comes home with something positive.

  5. Michele Cupp
    September 14, 2016 at 10:35 pm

    That’s a great plan. My son just graduated from high school, but I really wish I had followed some of those ideas to keep him on track and more focused.

  6. Amy Franz
    September 17, 2016 at 11:17 pm

    You’ve got a lot of good ideas here. I really need to keep my 11yr old on track this year!

  7. heather e.g. kaufman
    September 19, 2016 at 5:02 pm

    My 3rd grader doesn’t like his teacher. My son knows all his stuff, he is just a day dreamer. It is so sad to me!

  8. jules m.
    September 20, 2016 at 11:47 am

    we had to change my daughter’s schedule three times this year to avoid a teacher that she had last year. it was so bad she was crying and begging not to have to go, and looking into homeschooling. thankfully it is straightened out now, and she has a different math teacher who is great!

  9. September 20, 2016 at 7:18 pm

    It is so hard when we have kids that don’t want to go to school and the teacher is the problem. I’m all about promoting teachers and I know they have a hard job but I also feel for kids that are picked on by some teachers.

  10. Terry Poage
    December 15, 2016 at 5:36 pm

    This is a great post. When my Son was growing up he hated school. Got expelled from 4 different schools, then when he was in the 6th grade we finally found the school for him. He ended up graduating at the top of his class and now he is 26 and is doing very well.

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