Homework. Who is it for anyhow? My first graders will begin getting homework next week. On Mondays, we send homework home for the week home and expect it all back on Friday. This method allows the child to do the homework when he/she has time during the week and when he/she is not busy with other extracurricular activities. The purpose of the homework is to review already taught and learned skills. We are not expecting perfection; however we do expect an honest attempt at giving it your best. Some parents never look at this homework while other parents write out all of the correct answers and have their child copy the answers into their homework notebook. I tell parents to remember that they have already gone to first grade and that this homework is for their child to complete. Of course, as a parent:
ü You may provide the supplies with which to work
ü You may provide a quiet workspace
ü You may provide a snack
ü You could even be close by to help with directions or to answer questions
But your involvement should stop there. I work with your child 7 plus hours a day. I know what his/her work looks like and what to expect from work that I send home. When perfect papers come back all of the time and this is not what I see at school, something is going on. Today’s parents of first graders are so anxious about getting their child into the right college, which means getting their child into the right advanced high school program, which means getting their child into a GT (Gifted and Talented) program as soon as possible in early elementary school. In order to do this, many parents think that perfect homework papers will help. They won’t. Let your child breathe. Let him/her make some mistakes on that homework, he/she will learn from those mistakes and hopefully won’t make them again. Be realistic parents, offer support but please don’t do the work as this helps no one, especially your child.