So, we blew the homework support over the holiday. We checked very lightly to see if Mr G had any homework - did not double-check him when he said No. Didn't even check on either the percussion or keyboarding, which generally do have homework constantly. It's a holiday, everything went piff!
I don't know who remembered the log, but I did see it - three weeks of zero practice. Mr G had filled in 'No Time' (as in 'I didn't have time to practice') on nearly every line (though he'd figured out which days he'd been at grandparents houses and had entered those in specific - overnight at grandmother's house, no practice).
No time isn't accurate. We suck is accurate.
So, I asked him to correct the log to 'forgot' instead of 'no time' and wrote a nice long note to the teacher that started with saying 'we suck'. Okay, I did lead into that, but it was in the first sentence.
I also didn't beg for a better grade - this was a 30-point log, that's a big hit to the grade. But ... well, blew it is blew it, and the grade is not the end of the world. It's a learning experience (for, er, all of us). There's a hole in the data collection system, we checked his agenda and neither keyboarding nor percussion practice were listed. So, correct the system, and meanwhile, take the hit.
I wrote that all out in more specific words for the teacher, too. The note was a full page long.
And we got back a note applauding our integrity, and saying she gave him full credit for the homework assignment because we (including he) hadn't lied.
I love when the teacher gets what we're trying to do, and puts the reward on the right side of the line. It's the George Washington and the Cherry Tree story, essentially - having told the truth, the punishment is withdrawn. And since it turns out that this is the scenario that results in the most truth-telling (kids lie more after hearing 'The Boy Who Cried Wolf' and lie less after hearing the story of George and the Cherry Tree - even if they never heard either story before)... well, good. More reinforcement that acting with integrity earns rewards including the avoidance of negatives.
Now, he still has to get back to practicing - hard. And we're going to install the software on my mom's computer so he can't get away with skipping practice there. Still, since he cares about the grades, it's a good lesson all around. Do the work, but when you blow it, fess up immediately. It tends to develop an ease with fessing up when the expected outcomes are more on the positive side if you do, which should be obvious.
Ep gets nervous about bringing up his mistakes, but less so when he knows he can present a plan for how to prevent similar mistakes (see the series of posts on apology), and the same is true for me. But nervous is okay - terrified is not the goal.
It seems we're succeeding on the modeling, here. Mr G was pleased with the results, as well.
Now, to work on the strategy (making sure all items of homework are gathered in a single place - the agenda must be something we can all trust, or there's no point to using it).