Mr W received his report card about a week ago. He's in second grade, so I look at it mostly for glaring deficiencies, as opposed to extraordinarily high achievement. He's a smart kid, and he has made his mom very proud by saying that Science is his favorite subject.
We went over the report card together last night, and I noted how great he was doing with all the skill stuff they are evaluated on. Then I showed him his two S+ (which is "Satisfactory plus") in Science and Social Studies. The kids get one grade for achievement and another for effort, and he received two M- (Most of the time - minus) for effort in Handwriting and Math.
I told him that his teacher said he wasn't using his class time as well as he could be (it was in the comments section) and he protested that he was doing all he could. I was surprised that he reacted this strongly to the M-'s. In my mind they were like B-'s: yes, he could try harder, but no cause for alarm.
I asked if he wanted to talk to Mrs. D about it and to my surprise he said yes, so we'll meet sometime this week before school to talk specifics regarding how to turn those nasty M-'s around.
I know that my educational expectations of him are pretty high. But darn it, I want to see him use his talents and be challenged by doing something in life that he both likes and makes a positive impact on the world.