Friday, 24 July 2015

Tantrums over Summer Homework

Yes, I am that horrible, mean mom who makes her kids do homework over the summer.

Alex is still working on his academics through therapy but Nathan needed to keep up his skills in writing composition and language comprehension for math.  He has an IEP for both of them at school and his teacher asked if we could work on it during the summer so that he doesn't slip back.

We agreed on one journal entry a week (at least six sentences) and a worksheet of word problems.  I found a website which did worksheets for Ontario grade 2 math and we were in business.

Nathan is okay with the math.  He actually seems to enjoy it.  But it has been like pulling teeth to get him to do the journal entry.  Perhaps the vagueness of it unsettles him.  With the math there are clear boundaries and a predictable series of steps.  But the journal entry could be about anything.

Or maybe he just doesn't like it because it is more difficult for him to come up with ideas to share.  He does tend to suffer from "universal knowledge" where he assumes that everyone knows what he knows and so he gets frustrated with having to explain things to other people.

Usually he does his journal entry on Wednesday, which lets us talk about something we did on the weekend.  This Wednesday, he refused.  I told him that he would not get his screentime until his journal entry was done.  (This is usually a good consequence and lets me back off rather than having to stand over him and try to force him to do it.)  It is Friday morning and he has not done his journal entry or had screentime since Wednesday morning.

This reminds me of when my mother tried the old "you're not leaving the table until you finish your meal" technique and I sat at the table for 8 hours rather than eat the broccoli soup.  Eventually, she had to let me go so that I could go to bed and she never tried that technique again.

I'll have to think of some new options for getting the homework done.

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