Yes, nerd, geek, yada yada, I know.
So when it comes to my kids, we've worked tirelessly to instill in them a love for learning that exceeds my wildest expectations. Mr. A loves anything to do with animals or nature and will sit poring over books about snakes and the solar system for hours. My sweet Babygirl loves letters and logged countless hours at the writing table in preschool.
So homework has just come naturally to these kids.
HA! Did you just shoot pumpkin spice latte out your nose? Yeah, me too. Actually I've never had a pumpkin spice latte, but I hear they're all the rage.
Homework time for us is quite honestly akin to torture for one child, and the most amazing, fun thing ever for the other. Wanna guess which is which?
Pobre Mr. A would literally rather avail his little six-year-old body upon the linoleum than acquiesce to our completely impertinent demands that he do, nee correctly complete, his homework. Tantrums, I tell you. Are you listening, Mr. A of the Future? You made your parents insane.
I give you, exhibit Mr. A:
|What's this paper and pencil here for, mommy?|
|You're not going to make me do homework again, are you?|
So do you want to know our technique for getting ALL the children to do their work? And yes, I'm referring to our post-yelling and time-outing techniques. These are the ones that actually work best for us.
1) Bait and switch. I promise Mr. A a certain number of pages of his favorite book du jour (usually the library book that came home that week) for a certain amount of homework. This keeps everybody positive and thinking about rewards instead of punishments which is huge for Mr. A. I definitely have a reward-style kid when it comes to discipline.
2) Start early. The later in the day we wait to do homework, the more tired we are. I pull the homework from the backpacks as soon as we arrive home after pick-up. That way the information is still somewhat fresh for him (causing less frustration) and we've gotten it out of the way before we all get too tired.
3) Break it down. Or maybe break it up? Whichever you choose, just be sure to take it a little at a time. Especially if you're getting close to Melt-down Town via Frustration Avenue. Take a break and come back to it later. Or even start off with a plan to complete one section per day until the homework is due. As with everything in life, it's all about time management, people.
4) Be patient. I mean like, preschool teacher, bubbly positive, encouraging, "you can do this" kind of patient. You'll sound incredibly annoying, but your child will appreciate the fact that at least one of you is keeping your cool. Even with math homework. Ok, especially with math homework.
I predict now that word problems will be the death of me.
For those who like pictures of their parenting help tips:
And just one last thing. Can you remind me of these little tips when I'm sitting in the corner rocking back and forth, drawing stars and smiley faces on the floor with permanent marker? Kthx.
Hey, I never promised you'd save your sanity. Just that the homework would get done.
What about you? What's your best technique for getting through the homework rigamarole? Please do tell...