Saturday, August 8, 2015

Summer Time Homework: A Father and Son Activity

Author: Jose G. Barr

Its Saturday morning and I am sitting here with my little boy while he does his homework.  It hasn't always been as easy to get him to do his homework as it is today.  There are days that he does not want to do it and will sit, refusing to do anything. As I start to get frustrated I wonder what I can do to change his behavior?

While this question has been around since the dawn of time, the answer is always unique to the parent and child.  For me, the answer is to take a step back and stop trying to force him to do his homework. He is allowed to sit in his room and read a book, but nothing else.  He is not allowed to play with his toys or watch TV until his homework is done.  Ussually this does the trick and he is back in homework mode within 20 minutes.

Thankfully today is not one of those days. We got up this morning, we sorted the laundry together and had breakfast.  Before I could ask him to get started on his homework, he had it laid out on the table ready to go.  These are the days that I realize how blessed I am to have my son. I know that he is a typical little boy, but in my eyes he is perfect.

Some of you may wonder why he is doing homework during summer vacation. The answer to that is quite simple, we want him to keep learning, even when he is not in school.  We have run into parents, and teachers, who believe that kids should have the summer off and not have to keep doing any type of school work. The problem I have is that its a fact that kids lose a big part of what was learned over the past school year if their minds are not kept engaged and in learning mode. Joseph does math and reading assignments each and every day. Its just enough to keep him learning.

Besides the written math and reading (which are the type that we all learned in school when we were little), we also have him spending time on the computer with an app called "ScootPad", which focuses on Common Core lessons. I am not a fan of common core, its far too much interference from the Federal Government in how schools teach children the basics. What I am ok with is the version that is used by his school. Private schools are free to use only what they feel are the best parts of common core (far to much of it for my taste) and enhance it with additional lessons. Scootpad continues those common core lessons with fun activities on the computer while keep his skills fresh.

Are we right to have him doing school work during the summer? Or is the public school teacher correct, and we should give him a break? At the end of the day this is a question that is best answered by the parent because we have our childs best interest at heart.

As a father I enjoy the time spent with my son, going over his work and laughing together.  We will do this again tomorrow, hopefully it wont be a struggle. Bit if it is I will deal with it with love and patience, knowing that my little boy will get it done.

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