Posts Tagged ‘homework’

Parenting Dilemma #2

February 8, 2010

One of the most common difficulties in homes with school age children is dealing with homework.  An adolescent male, a junior in high school, slept no more than 12 hours one week due to mid-terms.  Parents consulted with me because their child had smashed several glasses due to homework frustration.  A young middle school student avoided going to classes because she was having trouble completing assignments due to procrastination. Even for kids who have no learning or executive function complexities, homework has become the crucible for self-worth as children labor over hours of assignments.  While the debate about excessive homework has been conducted in this country for many generations, I suspect that the issue with homework isn’t that there is too much of it (although it can appear that way).  Rather, I have observed that most kids aren’t engaged enough with generative activities. Children, and especially adolescents, aren’t devoting enough non-competitive time to their bodies, to creative pursuits, or to spending time outside. There is no balancing of the cognitive discipline necessary to intellectual growth with other developmental needs that are emotional, physical and what I call expansionary.  A social organization that is out of synch with its own ecology creates children who are out of touch with their own ecosystems. This leads to the massive homework meltdown. One way out of this is to change the way teachers, educators and principals think, like this. Another way is to practice the “more is less” approach to managing kids’ after school hours. (more…)

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