Every evening, an unheard cry is issued from the mouths of parents who are losing their minds over their child's homework.
I am one of them.
We, the media, discuss the hardships of having a baby, the challenges of life with a toddler, the troublesome teenage years, but we sort of skip over these pre-tweens who are going through something pretty major on a daily basis -- and homework is only the smallest part of their struggle.
Lily is a smart child, top of her class. Her homework is not an overload by any means. It's exactly what I would expect. It's a reinforcement of what was studied in class that day.
My 9-year-old's daily homework is my hell. Whether she is exhausted from the pressure of being in 4th grade, the social pressure of school, the pressure to study and learn at warp speed or just being a 9-year-old with lots of changes going on... our daily homework routine is my hell!
The cries start almost immediately and won't stop for about three hours. Which is how long her 40 minutes of homework takes.
As a parent of a 9-year-old, I want to tell all of you coming up the parenting pipeline to get ready for it. If you thought homework was bad when YOU were a student... it's HORRID when you are a parent.
After we try to soothe her cries, she finally settles into a rhythm and gets it done, but the meltdown takes a good chunk of our evening. It's stressful, it's exhausting and it's isolating.
Isolating because - no one talks about it. Maybe there is a 'my child does homework better than your child' checklist which I am not aware of. Or maybe parents don't want to discuss their struggles with their pre tweens so openly. I don't know. But would you people PLEASE talk about this, because I feel like I am going through it all alone and my child is the only one having full meltdowns every. Single. Night.
Lily is an A student, her grades are A's, she gets her stuff done, but this homework is killing her. Her teacher is great and while she does lay down the law and makes sure her students all know what is expected of the curriculum... Lily is stressed and there is A LOT to learn this 4th grade year. The pressure is on!
My heart breaks seeing her cry like this. I don't want to say she struggles through homework, but she is so stressed to get it done and get it done right that it's almost too much for her little mind and body to take.
What do we do parents? How do you handle this? Do you have any tips you can share with me, because I am emotionally drained every single night.