Homework

My goal for him this year is to get used to school life and teach him good academic habits and skills. His old school has fairly minimal, weekly school work that he can finish in 30 (40?) minutes in one sitting. When we moved, I gave him daily homework in Chinese, Math, word study or journal writing. His current school teacher gives him a set of weekly homework too. The homework has a lot more writing, which takes him a longer time to complete as his hand gets tired.  So we work on it everyday. The curriculum is also a little more advanced but that is not the daunting part for him. His problem lies more in his inverted letters and learning how to write on the line.

This Tuesday, he decided that he wanted to do work first the moment he got home, which I silently applauded. I got him a cup of water and noticed that he was drinking it halfheartedly, touching his lips to it without actually drinking much.  So I asked him what is the matter. He said he was too down to drink. I was somewhat puzzled – why is he down? And why can’t he drink water when he is down? He said when he feels down, he doesn’t feel like doing anything, which made sense to me, but he didn’t know why he was down. Except that he will feel better later after he’s done his homework. After some gentle coaxing, we figured out that he was feeling down because of homework. He was tired/ bored/ frustrated with how long it takes – part of his homework was to trace numbers from 1 – 100. He was probably too eager to start playing so we decided he could have a short 15 minute break and play before continuing.

So his new routine is now come home, play for about 30 minutes, start homework, then continue playing.

It was kinda funny because he would often say he doesn’t know why he is angry/ sad even though he knew it was about homework. Perhaps he understood that homework is important and he should do it but really wanted to do something else. He didn’t quite have the words for the conflicting feelings so he ends up saying he forgot or he doesn’t know. Maybe he was afraid that I would get angry if he said he didn’t enjoy homework. I mean he seemed perfectly happy with the homework I assign to him previously but I guess I never forced him to do a lot of copywork/ writing because I didn’t want to turn him off homework. It’s not a bad thing to teach him to deal with boring work that he just has to complete. Plus, he really does need the extra practice in writing…..

 

 

 

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