Homework? Aaaargh!!!!!! #MondayBlogs

 

I am revisiting an older post of mine today purely because yesterday was murder with Lil Princess’s homework! It wasn’t an elaborate project or anything like that, but trying to work on a page full of long multiplication, when a child doesn’t get it… It is tough!

I am not the world’s best mathematician. It was never my strong point, but I am keeping a growth mindset on this one… I will not allow my negative thoughts towards times tables reflect upon my kids!

We worked on it, but blood, sweat and tears were shed whilst completing it!

Enjoy my musings from a few years back!

 

It’s the stuff of nightmares!!!!!

“Yes, the poor children…so much homework, from such a young age…” I hear you chime in alongside me, but do you know what?

I ain’t talking ’bout the kids, its the parents I’m sympathizing with… Actually, not sympathizing with, because I’m one too… We all stand together and scream, “Aaaaaaaarrrrgghhh!” This particular nightmare was meant to have left my life after I finished studying! I didn’t know having kids meant I have to do homework again!!!

Now, I don’t mean your bog standard nightly reading, times tables practice or even spelling, I can cope with that, it’s just…

Every Friday, or every other Friday in Lil Princess’s case, I tentatively open school bags, fearing what piece of paper will float out of there, or what delight is stuck in the ‘Home Learning’ book!

What outlandish piece of research are the children to do this time, then make into a ‘creative, interesting, visual piece of writing/model/leaflet/book…you get my drift!

You know there are parents who don’t bother, theirs are the kids who have to go to homework club shamefully the next week, as they ‘didn’t do it!’

But the thing is, sometimes, this creative homework, though fantastic, and yes it really does help the kids reinforce learning whatever their topic at school, it’s just toooooo much!

I think that this kind of homework is ok once in a while, while kids are still at primary or junior school, up until 11, but every week… It’s almost impossible! What with various after school commitments with the kids, we only really have the weekend ‘free’ to do said homework… And, excuse me if I’m wrong, but shouldn’t weekends be for family time??

Kids are tired after a week of learning, and working as an Educator, I know how much these little tykes are expected to do during their academic day. It’s no wonder they can be cranky little sh*ts after school, especially when younger!

Now some children LOVE homework, I kid you not! Lil Princess begged for some once she saw her brother getting it, and now she does too, she attacks it with relish! But Lil Man, would hide his if he could, he HATES it!

So why am I bothering with this post? Because most if this homework cannot be done by the child alone, they need supervision, and guidance from the parents to do it, and especially with the little projects, it can become a HUGE deal!

If it’s going to be done, you want it done correctly, so it ends up becoming the parents homework, just as much as the child’s!

Hands up who’s guilty of becoming demon mum/dad trying to get your child’s homework just right.. I know I can be like that, but I do make sure the kids are doing it, not me… It’s just I have to oversee EVERYTHING!!!!!

It would be a personal slight if he/she handed in anything sub standard… And as we line up on Monday morning, and you see other parents, the smug faces of those who have done their child’s homework too, I mean who’s CHILDREN have done their homework, is apparent!

Large flashy models, or very elaborate posters, whatever was asked for, are brandished by the children…

Just can’t wait for next week. What mark did I get…? Sorry, I mean what mark did my child get…?!

Prejudice…

Today, I had a meeting with the children in my school’s School Council. I head that (along with the other hats I wear at work!) and we needed a meeting to discuss a few points ahead of the governors meeting tomorrow, so we could present the ‘Pupil Voice’.

One of the topics we were discussing was prejudice. I wanted to gauge the children’s perception or understanding of the word, and then with a very simple explanation to let them know what it was, and whether they feel that as a school do we deal with prejudice positively, and what we could do to combat it.

To break it down I said,

“Prejudice is when you look at a person, place or situation with ideas in your head, preconceived ideas, about how that person will be, or what that place will be like, or whether you could handle that situation, without actually knowing anything.”

We talked about how you could judge a person on what table they were sat at in the classroom, if the tables were set in ability groups, or a certain classroom, because you had heard about a particular teacher. Then we touched upon race too.

The children had never heard the term before which I thought was positive – you would hope that children under the age of 11 were not too aware of these things, much less exposed to it.

They gave me feedback on how they felt we combatted prejudice in the classroom, using Kagan seating, children had ‘buddies’ of different abilities on each table so they could help each other.

They suggested having an International Food Club, or lessons involving various multicultural instruments, or sports too.

All this was great, and as I left tonight, I was full of positivity, proud of the children’s ideas within the meeting.

Then I encountered a prejudice of my own. A fear of groups of loitering teenager.

Walking across the playground to our car park, I encountered three teenagers. They shouldn’t have been where they were. I asked if I could help them ( it was dark, by the way) and they said they were waiting for a cousin. That could have been true had it been half an hour previous, but at this time, most of the children have left.

They proceeded to climb equipment, so I requested that they leave. Luckily the caretaker came by then, and we both escorted them through where they said they had come, which was not actually a gate we had in use.

As they tried to disappear before we got close to them, one started climbing a fence, and I told him there were cameras, and that they should not come back here.

Of course, they finally made their way out, but not before telling me to “F off, you sl*g!” twice. I got the office manager to come out too, and she stood with us as they mouthed off. They also told the caretaker to “Go back home you P*ki!”, to which he said “You’re wrong there!” (He’s Indian, like me, not Pakistani!)

They loitered outside the gate, and I thanked goodness that I was parked in our staff car park at the other end of the school. The caretaker walked me to the car, mentioning that they had been in one of the other playgrounds, stating they were waiting for their sister before too!

I still drove my car surreptitiously past the entrance that they used to exit, to make sure they weren’t still there, so I could warn the Office Manager. Thankfully they had left by then.

In this situation, I fear my prejudice was well-founded. There are far too many teens that hang around the streets intimidating people walking past, sometimes, just by their presence, rather than by actually doing anything. This time though, they were on school property! And acting cocky is one thing, but had I been alone, they could have done anything, though considering they waited until they were half out the gate before slinging abuse at us, I doubt they had the backbone to try. But still, you never know…

I talk to my own child about this kind of behaviour, and hope he never thinks it’s okay to just hang about like that, and definitely not to trespass!

Okay, I’m off to chill myself out now!

Have a good evening Peeps!

 

One-Liner Wednesday – #1LinerWeds – Baby

“Nothing beats the feeling of a baby’s hands, or the sound of a baby’s laugh.” – Ritu

 

Had a lovely 24 hours with my best friend and her baby, my honorary niece… almost makes me want another, then I experienced the restless sleep associated with the ever hungry little people, and I think again…. For a visit and a few days, fine. To do it all again? I don’t think so!

For Linda’s #1LinerWeds Challenge.

We Made It! #AtEase

It’s Friday!

But not just any Friday…

For plenty of individuals, it is a Friday we have been crawling towards… the end of the existing term!

The kids are excited. It means a week (or two for some!) off and away from school! Yes there may be homework, but the pressure of getting up and going in is not there!

And us teachers…well, when I say we crawl, I mean it!

This first half term of the academic year is always tough. Settling in new pupils, getting to know them. setting boundaries and rules, assessing… it is a tough slog.

I know I personally have  found this last term extremely exhausting, with my new responsibilities, and a lot more children to get to know. Names are never a problem for me, I have learned 70 new ones so far, and it looks likely that I need to learn another 30, if only for a short while, next term! But, the downside of having so many children to be responsible for, I don’t feel I really ‘know’ them yet.

Still, I have made it through this term, with no days of complete meltdowns, (well, not mine, some of the kids however have had a few!) and look forward to a few special days during my week off.

My only worry… when we come back from the break, all the progress we have made with our littlest ones will have been forgotten (believe me, it doesn’t take much for young children to forget what they were doing before!) and so the cycle will continue to roll, with us having to re-settle them, but hopefully only for a few days before they remember what Nursery and School is all about!

So, I am off to start my last day (for a week at least) and then enjoy a week of relative freedom!

Enjoy your Friday Peeps!!!!

 

One-Liner Wednesday – #1LinerWeds –

“When you wake up with a headache… It’s not the sign of a good day…” – Ritu

Yes Peeps, that’s me today…

Went to bed with a headache, slept really well, woke with a headache… popped a pill and waiting for it to work it’s magic now…

 

Please class, be nice to me today!

For Linda’s #1LinerWeds Challenge.

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