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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Today marks the 2nd week in a row my SD8 refuses to do her homework. She has been having trouble getting her work done in school as well, it seems. Of course, her teacher doesn't notify me of this, I just notice all the half done work coming home graded with nothing but a star. I ask her why she isn't doing her work and she explains to me that she only likes doing "fun" things like arts and crafts and watching movies and doesn't want to do her regular work.

I've tried explaining to her that everyone likes doing the fun stuff more than the school work, but that you still have to do the work. She didn't seem moved.

I've tried incentivising & punishing homework and school work and she doesn't seem moved still.

How can I explain to an 8 year old (3rd grader) that she must do her work to avoid bad consequences (like being held in at recess (which has happened once in these two weeks)? Especially when her teacher seems to care less???

Also, she is the oldest so I haven't gone through this before and am feeling a bit confused by her lack of motivation?
 

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If her teacher doesn't seem to care, and any school-based consequences are not particularly of concern to your SD, I'd just let it go. There's no convincing evidence that homework does anything significant to improve learning prior to high school. It's December, and a lot of kids get squirrely before the holidays. I'd wait until the New Year and if the incomplete work at school continues, schedule a conference with the teacher to try to figure out whether it is impacting her learning, or causing problems with classroom management. But really, personally I think homework is highly over-rated.

Miranda
 

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I agree. Kids have been wacky here this week, and I certainly wouldn't take anything they did to heart. (I teach). We've done more project based learning / readers theatre / etc to keep engagement up because between kids being hyped about Christmas and the end of term assessments, it isn't the time to try to be learning through direct instruction and traditional looking work.


Also, you are in Idoho. Isn't it cold there? Is being held in from recess even a real punishment? When we lived in a cold climate and my DD was in elementary school, she asked for recess detention because she liked being in a warm, quiet room reading a book. She thought it was much nicer than recess and didn't think it was fair that only students who didn't do their work *got* to stay inside.


Please don't under estimate the amount of time spent on assessments at the end of terms, or how that effects the work on paper that kids do. If your school using DRA scores (or something similar) for reading, those are all done one-on-one, which means the teacher has to give the rest of the class stuff that they can do on their own for HOURS to get through the whole class. That half completed work with a star may have existed only so that the teacher could really listen to every child read, and then ask them questions about what they just read. While this does seem like a big loss of instructional time, it means that instructional time will be far more focused on exactly where all the kids are when school starts back in January.


I've listen to every single one of my students read for about 15 minutes each and done error analysis on the running records. It's a big investment of time. Because I only see small groups, the other kids have played phonic board games. I've also done 2 types of writing assessments and personalized math assessments. I'd hate for any parent to think that I don't value their child's education because they played board games for nearly a week. The truth is that I'm now very clear on exactly what each of my students needs to focus on. My kids' parents get a nice narrative write up on all this, but they won't get it til January. Right now, if their child talks about the board games, the parent could think that I'm just burnt out and needing Christmas break.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Also, you are in Idoho. Isn't it cold there? Is being held in from recess even a real punishment? When we lived in a cold climate and my DD was in elementary school, she asked for recess detention because she liked being in a warm, quiet room reading a book. She thought it was much nicer than recess and didn't think it was fair that only students who didn't do their work *got* to stay inside.
It is cold here but my SD8 LOVES to be outside in the snow and weather and was very upset when she was told she had to stay inside and finish her work. When I tried to explain why that happened, she just clammed up and still refused to do her work. I'm hoping it's just a holiday thing but I'm a bit worried if it's not.

Thanks for the advice though, I'll just keep an eye after the holiday season.
 
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