Wherever I would go, I would see moms fretting over their kids’ school work. Earlier it would be whenever they met or spoke and then Whatsapp happened. Now we have whatsapp groups of mommies whose kids are in the same class. Such groups are the busiest ones despite being devoid of the customary good morning and good night messages. The circadian rhythm of such groups is very different. Their day begins AFTER the school day ends. There’s a barrage of the day’s assignments which is like a cue for the endless discussions to begin. And on and on it goes till every issue is discussed threadbare. It’s more amusing than annoying now, when you see the thirty somethings getting all worked up and nervous over their kids’ projects. I have half a mind to say aloud, “Chill girls” which anyway I’m muttering inside my head. But I resist because I don’t want to be a social pariah, an outcast on that group. So I do the next best thing. I switch off the notifications. Easy that was! But switching off my brain, that ain’t so easy.
So I wonder, why my reaction is so different from the majority of moms. Is it because I am not bothered? Or just plain lazy? Naah I don’t think so. The reason probably is that I’m clinically detached from it and that’s very clear to me and my daughter that it’s her homework not mine. I can guide her, help her where she stumbles but I’ll not walk the road for her. She has to do that on her own.
This was my protective reflex to all those fretting moms I met when I had just entered motherhood. It used to get so boring when all conversations would converge to homework and projects. I promised myself that I shall not succumb to it. So the day my little one started play school, I would ask her how her day was and sit with her and go through the day’s work so it would get reinforced. Initially of course there was no homework but when it did start, my routine was unchanged. We would go through her day’s work and then she would take out her worksheets. If she wanted to play, I would tell her that she could provided she came back and did her work. That would give her a sense of control. There were days when the promise was honoured and there were some when it was broken. On those days, she would have to take her unfinished work to school and face the music. There were tears and pleas but I was quite firm. And my otherwise lenient husband stood by me which drove in the message to her. It also meant she made rag tag projects and carried them to school while other kids brought ‘parents made’ or ‘made to order’ stuff. Sometimes she scored less but there were times when the teacher appreciated her efforts. I do have a bone to pick with schools on that. If the stuff looks so obviously beyond the child’s capability, it should be rejected. That will help stopping the trend. But anyway I do not want to digress.
Coming back to the point the upside of this has been beyond my expectations. a) My kid has become independent and confident. b) She plans her post school time to accommodate work and play. c) She feels empowered and in charge of her life. d) She’s learnt to deal with the consequences of her actions and finally e) I do not run after her or harsss her. That saves me some breath and also unnecessary discord.
What’s not to like here?
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Happy ParentingFirst Published – https://www.momspresso.com/parenting/musings-and-reflections/article/my-child-s-homework-is-her-responsibility