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Challenge: Back to School

Trouble at School Can Make Us Better Parents

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It was the adjective my two-year-old daughter's teacher used to describe her day. In fact, our little ball of fire had even paid a visit to the preschool director - you know, the toddler equivalent to a principal.

I tried to remain calm, but my heart was racing. It was only the third week of school.

You see, I’m a teacher. And I likely suffer from the most unrealistic academic expectations of all. My four-year-old son has never had a problem walking the line, why can’t my little girl?

I was angry. I was disappointed. I was embarrassed.

But, several hours into my pity party, an epiphany came. What if my daughter’s behavior was pointing to something deeper happening in her life? And what if I could have only realized it through the kicking and throwing of toys outside of our home?

I considered our two recent moves. Big stress.

I considered the transition to her first year of five-days-a-week preschool. Big stress.

I considered my return to full-time teaching. Big stress.

And, just for kicks, my parents were visiting for the week.

Truly, everything began to change when I stopped seeing my daughter’s infractions as failures and started seeing them as teachable moments. The homework, of course, would be my own.

I can’t say that things have changed overnight, but I think my husband and I now have a good place to make positive changes in our parenting.

And the teachers who lead with painful truth? They offer rich insights that only those who love our children can supply.

And I couldn't be more grateful for the extra help.

*For more adventures, check out Lauren's blog Unlearning:

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