A Bright Kid Is Not Doing His Homework, Saying It Is Boring. What Should A Parent Do?

Question: A bright kid is not doing his homework, saying it is boring. What's the best way for a parent to approach this situation?

Answer: Saying something is boring is a code word for many, many children and it often means something different. So as is often the case with kids, we need to make sure that they're saying what we think they're saying when they say it.

So my first question would be "What do you mean by boring?" Is it boring because you already know it? Is it boring because you can't understand it so you gloss over it? Is it boring because it's become uncool in the classroom to be interested in it? All of these would be important questions in helping to understand why the child is now refusing to do his or her homework.

The other piece of this is, children will often declare work as boring when it's hit a point where it's become too difficult for them to do. It's a much easier thing for them to say it's boring than to say it's too hard -- it's more acceptable. Then you want to understand why it's too hard for them. Again, is there the onset of a learning disorder? Is this the onset of major depression? Is there anxiety? Is there bullying in school? Are there things in the environment that are making it harder for them to focus on the work that they had previously been able to do well?