8 Mar 2013

A Mum In Need Of Advice

Homework can be an issue in many households, mine included. And to be honest, at times I think  it can get a little out of hand. Don't get me wrong, I believe that homework is an important part of our children's education and I would never encourage any of my sons not to do what is required of them. But on the other hand it can create "issues".

The issues that circulate in our household, and I know that I can't be alone here, is getting our teens to communicate did I just write that ? teens communicating ! To be  honest when asked about the homework and assignments they have been set. To actually sit down with interest, some enthusiasm wouldn't hurt, would it ? and to actually have a go at concentrating on what is before them and to leave all other distractions aside until everything is completed to my satisfaction, and to the standard that has been set by the teacher.
Yeah right, I am dreaming aren't I

It is an ongoing battle, one that often requires A LOT of patience on my behalf.


Earlier this week I received a phone call from my sons English teacher expressing her concern for my son and his attitude towards his work. The assignment paper that he handed in (one that I was unaware he had) was not only late he had already been given an extension but also not up to his usual standard. Nowhere near in fact
On hearing this news, I was very thankful that she had taken the time to communicate with me her concerns, and grateful that she made me aware of what was going on with my sons schooling progress. Something that impresses me greatly with the school that my sons attend.

Being an almost fifteen year old his attitude is a case of shoulder shrugging and eye rolling. It frustrates me, I am aware that he does not have keen interest in school he prefers playing sport but usually with a little encouragement, he has always managed to make decent grades.
I think as far as a routine goes, I will have to shake things up around here !

I have tried structure, a time table and laying down the law...Big fail
I've tried letting him have a go at figuring it out on his own...OK, not a great idea
I've sat with him...this caused a few arguments
And I have suggested that he ask his older brothers for advice or help...I think my ears are still ringing

Things are in need of change around here if success is to be achieved. I need to put a plan in motion that will prove to me that my son is on the right track to taking his education a little more seriously.

I guess I am after a little advice. Homework and son number three has always been a slight issue and silly as I may be, I thought that as time past and the older he got, the kinks would slowly be worked out. Trying to get him to understand the importance of putting in as much effort for school, as he does for recreation, is certainly becoming a challenge, it's falling on deaf ears.

So I am calling out for help.
Does anyone have any idea how I could next approach these homework issues ?
I would be grateful for any feed back that comes my way......

I really am a Mum in need of advice


Linking up with the lovely Grace for another fabulous FYBF and praying for a little advice from all the fantastic mums out there :)

11 comments:

  1. I have no answers - I struggle now with my young sons who aren't overly enthuisiastic about school! Even though I'm a teacher, I detest homework. Thinks have been made a little easier this year by a change in the structure of homework offered. There's more autonomy for them to choose tasks and this has been a big help. Good luck - I'm dreading high school xx

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    1. Homework is a nightmare some nights :( I wish it was written in an easier format, it can be hard to read and lend a hand sometimes

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  2. The Book "Parent Talk" by Chick Moorman has a good section on School - he has a few suggestions regarding homework.
    The book gives lots of examples of things to say to your kids to empower them and provide them with self responsibility. I don't have a teen, but I like alot of what he says and am slowly changing my vocab so by the time my daughter is old enough, I might be giving more positive parent talk. All the best!
    FYBF

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    1. That sounds like an interestign read. Things have been ok in the homework department up until just recently when my oldest started grade 5. They seem to have really cranked up the volume of homework significantly since last year and it is taking time to find his feet. I'd like to try and develop some strategies befoer we hit mjor probelms so thanks for the tip!

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    2. Thank you, I will be sure to check that book out. It sounds great and as though it may very well be a big help :)

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  3. I'm a high school teacher with 2 teen sons of my own - both of whom will do a bit of a slap-dash with homework tasks but luckily they'll put a bit more effort into assignments. I don't have the answers for you, but I do have some suggestions ...

    - can you find out if he is actually have difficulty with the content of the work as it could be a confidence issue - often there is a huge gap in the demands of learning once kids get to that age and not only does it come as a shock to them, it can be quite unsettling when they are not sure they understand the task at hand. Sometimes when a task is explained in a different way (different terminology etc) it can make a huge difference

    - are there social issues happening at school - are there some issues with his mates or peer group that are taking his attention away from concentrating

    - a discussion about post-school options is always helpful when kids can map a clear pathway between school, and the subjects they've chosen, and the career they're looking at - even if he's unsure at this stage, it's really important to keep the widest range of options open

    - my advice is to give him a private study area and check occasionally to see how he is going and if he needs some help - tell him that you'd like to check his work once it's finished to make sure he's on track, and that's because you love him and not because you want to control it

    - your school should have a Guidance Officer who is both a counsellor and career's advisor - make an appointment to meet with him/her as they are one of the school's best resources and a great link between your son, his teachers, and the best educational program for him

    - keep in touch with his teachers - email is a great way of communicating with teachers and he'll know that you and the school are working together with his best interests at heart - this sends a very powerful message to him about others believing in him and his future

    - does he have a part-time job or is a member of a team sport? Research does show that kids involved with either or both are better managers of time and more easily motivated

    - a semester planner up on the wall will help schedule assignment priorities and sometimes the stress of not knowing when everything is due etc leads to a feeling of overwhelmed and out come the delaying/avoidance tactics

    So sorry to go on for so long there and I'll stop now, but I've a huge interest and many years experience in working with homework-haters (and now my own 2!) Let me know if I can help with anything more specifically. GOOD LUCK xxx

    Shari

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    1. I can't thank you enough for your wonderful advice. And please do not apologise for your reply being so long. I truly appreciate all that you have said that you took the time to give me such sound advice. Look out, I may just take you up on your offer for more fantastic advice. You have been a great help. Thank you so very much xxx
      Thanks for stopping by

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  4. That advice from Shari is awesome, I'm battling to get my preppie to learn her sight words - I'm dreading when I have 2 teenage boys to get motivated! Good luck x

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    1. Shari has helped me enormously, she is one fantastic chick !!
      Teens are great ( I have four teen sons) eeeeekkkk but homework can be trying. Good luck with your preppie and her sight words xx

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  5. Oh, gotta hand it to Shari for giving such detailed advice!
    I, on the other hand, have no tips or suggestions. My boys are still only 3 and I can barely get them to sit still for 5 minutes with Play Dough :-/

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    1. Grace I can't tell you enough how much Shari's advice has helped me. The fact that she took the time to help me out is fabulous.
      Thank you also for this great link up, without it I may never have received such wonderful advice xx

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