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Smart Kids with Poor Grades

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Being smart does not guarantee success, or guarantee good student grades. Smart kids have potential, but they may not achieve this potential. They may underachieve for a variety of reasons.
If a child is performing below their ability the situation needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Lack of achievement in the early days of school can limit options latter on. A child who performs poorly on the HSC (despite reasonable intelligence) will miss out on university, and the better employment options. This is very frustrating, with more intelligent people feeling more frustration than others.

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Some potential causes of poor grades include:
Lack of challange – If the child finds the lessons boring they will tune out, considering everything obvious or trivial. This can lead to poor grades, which the child may not care about.
Distractions – Anything that causes distraction or lack of focus may cause the child problems. They simply do not learn the work, and perform poorly.
Test Anxiety – Some individuals do not perform well under exam situations. Their ability is fine, perhaps much better than others. But they do not do well when stressed over exams.
Handwriting – In these days of computer typing it is not uncommon to have poor handwriting. This can mean poor test results, even if the child has considerable ability.
Lack of Confidence – Some students are perfectionists, which can work against them as they feel their work is not up tot he standard it should be. They will not submit or complete work because they feel it is not up to standard, never quite right.
Ineffective study – We are told to study the material, but never quite told what study is! A few students benefit from instruction in how to independantly research and put information together.
Essay Writng and communication– a few individuals cannot put their knowledge and ideas into words. This is even more pronounced if the ideas are original. Some students can visualize the answer, but not explain it to others. Developing essay writing skills can make all the difference to some students.
Learning difficulties – A few individuals, including some very intelligent minds, think differently to other people. This can lead to problems with education based on conventional thinking. The child might suffer dyslexia, which requires some professional attention.

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Sometimes one issue can hold a student back in every area. Coaching can address writing abilty, or study habits, or perhaps a learning disability that prevents a smart child from achieving good grades. Address any issue as early as possible. the child will be happier for the improvement, and have more options in their future.

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