When I began writing this post, my memory of homework as a child was vague. Despite my desire to remember homework time as pleasant for the both of us, I reached out to my mother for the real scoop. This is what the original BookWormMama had to say:
“When I helped with math there were always tears. In elementary school I knew how to get the answers but not the way your teacher showed you. You cried because I was not doing it right. I had to go to your school and sit in on classes to learn what was referred to then as ‘the new math’…In junior high I could still help with English and science but by then you thought you were so much smarter than me.”
No wonder I blocked out that particular aspect of my childhood. I was kind of a butt.
What is it with homework that raises the blood pressure and brings on the tears? There’s too much of it. Kids are not interested at best and just plain lazy at worst. The Internet and video games get in the way. The reasons for homework problems are plenty, but the solutions can be few and tough to find. Neil McNerney, an author, dad, and practicing family counselor has outlined a plan of action in Homework – A Parent’s Guide to Helping Out without Freaking Out.
You might expect a series of charts, outlines and study techniques designed to make you your child’s in-home teacher. On the contrary, McNernery spends a great deal of time cutting to the heart of why parents freak out over homework in the first place.
McNerney thoroughly addresses the many pressures that parents face including pressure from other parents, teachers, time constraints, and the very students they are trying to help.
The book helps readers identify what type of student they have (Responsible, Anxious, Disorganized, etc.) and what type of parent they are (Calm, Supportive, Blaming, etc.). McNerney combines these key pieces of information to identify the leadership style that will most likely work for each parent-student combo.
What I like about the book is that each chapter delivers what it promises. The book is simple and easy to read. The Parenting FAQ section is particularly insightful, offering answers to questions like:
- What is the “correct way” to check my child’s homework?
- Should I reward my child for good grades?
- What if my child just doesn’t care about homework?
As the author points out, and it’s worth repeating, your child does care about their homework. Even if they say they don’t, or if they claim to hate a particular subject or teacher, they do care about success and they generally want the admiration of their parents.
Caveat: In my experience, typographical errors have become common among best sellers, self-published titles and books of every genre, size and popularity. While the instant book is informative and interesting, it is not error free.
One reader will win a copy of Homework – A Parent’s Guide to Helping Out without Freaking Out. For your chance to win, simply fill out the Rafflecopter entry form below.
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The publisher provided a copy of this title in exchange for an honest review.
Is helping with homework a challenge? What was homework like when you were a kid?
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