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Dr. Yvonne Fournier

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Top Stories by Dr. Yvonne Fournier

Dear Dr. Fournier: School has started and after only a couple of weeks, my son is having trouble with homework. I do not want my wife and I to get into last year’s shouting matches with him. It seems like every time I try and help him, he gets angry and defensive. What can we do to get our son to let us help him with his homework? James C. Austin, TX Dear James: Many parents have heard their children in frustration say this about homework, “I don’t know how to do it!” The natural inclination of parents is to respond this way: “Then let me help you do it.” Unfortunately, this leads many parents to cross the line of parenting into teaching. Instead of feeling helped, many children feel alone, intimidated and, finally, humiliated. James’ went on to write that his son Jeff had just started learning fractions. Jeff’s teacher assigned 20 problems for homework. Jeff t... (more)

Old Style Discipline and Authority Won’t Work In Today’s World

Today’s column begins with two letters I received from parents concerned with new disciplinary rules that have been enacted for the new school year that has already started in some parts of the country. Dear Dr. Fournier: My son is back in school but at registration, I was handed a copy of the new discipline policy.  On the first day of school, he and his classmates got an explanation of the policy and it has scared him to death. He cries, doesn’t want to go to school, and says he can’t do his work because he is afraid. He’s 9 years old and in the 4th grade. He has always bee... (more)

Student Doesn’t Need Occupational Skills - Yet

Dear Dr. Fournier: My child is the most disorganized human being on the planet! I try to get her to write her homework and other assignments down in her notebook and to put all her handouts in one place and that has not worked. I've bought books, pads, special notebooks, trappers, calendars and planners for her, all to no avail. She doesn't use them to get organized. If anything, she uses them to become a bigger mess. Is there any hope for us or am I expecting too much? Katie W. Pensacola, FL Dear Katie: Do parents expect too much if they ask their child to go to work and do t... (more)

The story of an eighth-grader’s life

Dear Dr. Fournier: School is well, yuck. I like first period okay because it’s health and you learn a lot about yourself.  Second period is English. It’s okay, too but not my thing. I mean it’s not the best, but I can handle it. Third period is history. I hate it and my teacher. She is so mean to everyone. No one likes her. Fourth period is science. Well, it’s better than history, but not a lot. I really don’t like it. Fifth period is math. I like it but every day my teacher gives us a long sheet of problems to do and I can’t do most of them. Well, sixth period is music. I hat... (more)

Preparation: Planning for College Should Begin Early

Dear Dr. Fournier: My son is closing out his 10th grade year. He does not seem to be too worried about college right now, since it is still over two years away. I feel a bit uneasy about it, however, because I don’t want things to go too long without making some sort of a plan. What can we do now so that we are ahead of the game for college prep? Anna B. Columbus, OH Dear Anna, You are doing your son a favor by asking these questions now. He needs to understand that the longer he waits, the fewer and fewer his options will become. Let’s get him moving! ASSESSMENT Sin... (more)