I have a confession to make: I hate homework. I hate doing it, I hate helping with it; I hate the mere existence of it. Oh, I have a kindergartner. And stop laughing; he gets a lot of homework.
He gets a packet at the beginning of the week that needs to be completed by Thursday. It is all worksheets and most of the instructions are incomplete and I don’t understand what the teacher wants and I don’t know how to explain it to him. And then he gets worksheets that were to be finished in school that say things like “please finish” and have no instructions of them. Besides saying, “Michael, do you know what you were supposed to do here?” how exactly do I have him finish this?
And then there are the reading books and poetry folders and family homework. Family homework? I went to kindergarten thank you very much.
Did I mention KINDERGARTEN?
I may sound disgruntled, but I’m tired of spending every night fighting about homework. I’m tired of teaching concepts that did not get taught in the classroom but have homework about them. I work, my husband works, we rush home, make dinner, and then do homework. Then it is bath, bed, and we start over the next day. My son is surprised on the days we say, “you don’t have any homework.” Normally, this is weekends.
Not to mention all the research out there that says homework in the early grades mean nothing. It is not indicative of learning or progress or teaches kids anything other than burnout. We fight and there are tears, some of them mine. By first grade my son is going to hate learning. What is this going to teach a child?
I am not an anti-education parent. I’m a lawyer. I volunteer at the school. I believe strongly in education and reading and writing. I’m just not sure why worksheets and drills and mandatory nightly homework with research projects teach a five year old. And don’t kid yourself. The parents are doing this homework the further you go in the upper grades.
And then the kids aren’t learning anything.