Help me help my sister

<p>I thought this section may be the best place because many of you may have gone what she's going through. So here it is:</p>

<p>My little sister, D, Was a good student all throughout primary school. She was even a finalist in our country's primary school student of the year and made the honor roll every year. But when she got into high school (grade 7) her grades started to dip and they continued to drop steadily, so now she just finished grade 9 and the principal called my mother to say D will be lucky if she even makes a 2.0.
Another side to D is that she is a major track athlete, she made 2 national junior teams just this year and is very dedicated to the sport.
But my parents feel as if track is what is causing her grades to drop. My mom told me that in addition to repeating her, they are going to make her stop track, which I know will absolutely devastate her.
My mom says that D's problem is that she doesn't apply herself and that she needs a structured environment where someone is constantly watching over her and forcing her to study. I think that she just needs to be taught how to study. I know that she can do the work, she just doesn't know how to take tests.</p>

<p>Another thing that complicates matters is that school always came easily to me. I could not study and still get an A. I was always on the honor roll, got really got SAT scores and got a full academic scholarship to college. Because of this my parents have always compared her to me. So I know she feels some kind of resentment towards me because of this.</p>

<p>What is the best way the I can help D? She also has hopes of going to college on a track scholarship but I can't seem to hammer into her that she needs grades for that too!</p>

<p>Have you sat down and talked to her? Have you asked her what about any career aspirations or if she wants to go college? There are some students who are not college material. Your sister might not be the college-type. BUT it is too soon to say. She is a rising sophomore, right?</p>

<p>Go through her transcript (if allowed) and ask her what her strengths and weaknesses are. Is she good at math or English? Does she hate science, does she enjoy Spanish? What helps her study? Does she need background noise (perhaps classical music) to get her to focus? Does she need a tutor, and if so, could you help her improve her study habits?</p>

<p>Also, something might be bothering your sister. Have a heart to heart with her, if possible.</p>

<p>At this point, she could still go to college on a track scholarship, but she should not be relying on athletics to take her far when there are so many more athletes in the country, she should be focused on her grades. Afterall, only the best students get those awards, not the slackers.</p>

<p>She wants to be a marine biologist (which I told her she needs the grades for) and she isn't looking to do track professionally, just to pay for college.</p>

<p>As for her study habits, I don't really know. I just became aware that her academics were a real problem last month because I was off at school. But from what mom says, she doesn't study or apply herself. And I am not the person to help her study at all. She, our study habits are the same (virtually non-existent) but I can immediately pick up on and retain things said in class and she can't.
My mom said that if D sits down and is forced to read over her note again and again and again then she does well. But she doesn't have the motivation nor focus to do this. She gets bored easily and takes frequent breaks in between studying. But these breaks get longer and longer until no studying is done.<br>
And she isn't showing strength in any subject other than Art. Maybe a tutor is a good idea, but it would be so hard to fit one in because she doesn't get done with track until 7:00pm which doesn't leave much time for tutoring.</p>

<p>One of the reasons that she is so dedicated to track is because she loves it and also because unlike what you said, in our country, there aren't many athletes so it actually isn't out of the question for her to make the 2014 olympics.</p>

<p>And yes she is supposed to be a rising sophomore, but she's going to repeat freshman year.</p>

<p>Thanks for your advice :), any other inputs? lol</p>

<p>It seems as though she is lazy and just unmotivated. I think taking her off the track team will be a good idea. Repeating freshman year over again? That is a bad sign. What happens if she fails a second time? Then what? </p>

<p>It is clear that although you two share the same studying [or lack of] habits, her lack of studying isn't going to help her. She is the type who needs to review information repeatedly in order to do well in school. Yeah, she is good at Art, but most colleges don't bother looking at Art grades because most people get A's in Art.</p>

<p>I honestly think it is up to her parents to kick her rear into shape and at 15 (16?) she is old enough to know better. At this point, you could use scare tactics on her, but that's all I can think of. </p>

<p>Good luck with your sister!</p>

<p>Yeah, the only thing about track is that I'm worried that if she quits she'll get depressed and really become unmotivated in her school work. Although my mom says that trying to get track back will be her motivation to do well in school.</p>

<p>But I'm going to talk to her as soon as they tell her (they actually haven't told her about repeating yet, and they swore me to secrecy). Its gonna be tough but I hope I can get through to her.
And she's 14, we start school a year earlier than Americans.</p>

<p>And thanks for all your advice, I really appreciate it :)</p>

<p>I think you need to take a look at how much time she really dedicates to running track. If she's browsing for cool shoes on ebay all day, then she's overcommitting. But if she spends 2 hours running and staying healthy, while other kids are sitting at home watching TV, then you don't want to take that away.</p>

<p>I also ran track. Drawing from my experience, being that good at track is probably going to create a passion. But I don't know your sister well enough to really say that. If you take away something she likes, she might get worse. I don't know how to effectively motivate a lazy student - for me it's always been diligence and the desire to be better than others. I'm just suggesting that dropping track is a bad idea.</p>