11 In daily life/ parenting

No one tells you when you have kids that you have to go through school and homework and exams all.over.again. Year after year after year.

The kids are on school holidays and I only worked 2 days this week. Are we having a pyjama party every day and then drinking coffee with friends in the sunshine?

Nope. Firstly, there is no sunshine. Boo.  And secondly, my 9-year old has exams in all his subjects next week so every day it’s study, study, study, argue about studying, prepare test questions, go through test questions, argue about test questions. And so on.

Just the kind of fun I thought parenting was going to be like when I signed up for this gig.

(Yes, son, that is indeed what sarcasm is.)

In only 3 subjects did the teachers provide an exam pack to read and study. The rest of the study guidance goes along the lines of “Know what happened in WWII, who fought on what side and what happened at important dates.”   Thank the lawd that husband studied history and wanted to be a history teacher – that subject is all his to supervise!

He’s also overseeing geography and maths. I’m doing English (how funny, considering I’m not a native speaker but I know the difference between their and they’re so I’m ok :), science (very helpful study pack), Latin (study pack), Religious studies, music and French (I don’t know any French so I’m not very confident the kiddo will do well, there are no study notes from the teacher and that language just does not make sense to me :|).

Anyway, the kids are actually supposed to study on their own. Their exam guide says useful things like “explore different ways of studying like making flash cards or quizzing yourself” or “prepare yourself a study schedule for the next 2 weeks so that you don’t leave any subject out and study all of them equally and on time for the exam”.

I’m not sure which 9-year-old boy understands these statements.

So we’re spoon-feeding a bit. Husband made a schedule (did I mention he wanted to be a teacher?). We prepare test questions for each subject, let him “study” for 20-30 minutes and then let him answer the questions. Afterwards, depending on how fried his brain is, we go through the answers or give him a break and do it later.

And I’m having to make a lot of hot chocolates as that seems to be the study aid of choice.

And I can’t wait for these exams to be over so he can be just a kid again and I don’t have to play teacher. It is not a profession that I’m interested in and even the husband would rather watch bouldering, Crossfit Games or the Mentalist in the evenings instead of drawing maps of Europe and correcting pages and pages of maths.

At least there’s one good thing that comes out of this experience – we’ll be ready for year 5 exams next spring!

If we haven’t sent him to a boarding school by then.

Tell me – do kids get an insane amount of homework these days?  Are parents expected to be pros at tutoring their kids in every subject?  And what do I tell the kiddo when the science notes have a part about electrical circuits a bit messed up? 😐

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  • Reply
    June 1, 2014 at 8:46 am

    It’s different in state school. No big homework tasks at least in Y4. Just spelling and sentences 1x and 1x maths per week. He sometimes brings home his topic books to finish something he didn’t do at school or does some presentations in history voluntarily.

    • Reply
      June 3, 2014 at 2:04 pm

      Well, in Estonia there are not study-packs …. but I’m also a parent who tries to avoid studying with kids (but there is lot of yelling…Go to study! Have you not studied yet!? instead, so maybe the other option is better).. I just do not have time or energy in evening to start studying …. really looking forward to summer holiday!

      • Reply
        June 4, 2014 at 10:06 am

        Your kids are probably on holidays already. We still have 4 weeks to go. At least the exams are over. Whew.

    • Reply
      June 4, 2014 at 10:05 am

      The usual weekly homework is ok but these end of year tests are stressful. For me, that is 🙂 At least now I’ve learned a few new things like quite a bit of Latin and French 🙂

  • Reply
    Lisa gusto
    May 30, 2014 at 8:10 am

    Our half term is equallyawful but because of weather and celiacs disease diagnose. But no homework! My 10 year old did all his tests before half term and school did all the prep They did’nt even tell us! I’m sure it will be a different story for 11+ in January … X L

    • Reply
      May 30, 2014 at 9:04 am

      Who’s got celiac?? I wish the school did all the exam prep – they are the trained teachers after all!

  • Reply
    May 30, 2014 at 4:16 am

    My 7 year old gets an insane amount of homework and it started on day one of school. 3rd graders who go to the same school, get less homework than those little ones so it must be a new thing. My other kids are much older but they didn’t have so much homework when they started school. That’s in Finland.

    • Reply
      May 30, 2014 at 9:05 am

      So even Finland is starting to increase homework 🙁

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