Parents can learn something by helping with homework
“Experience is the master of all things.”
– Julius Caesar
I was watching the news and there was a report on the challenges of “distance education” in public schools, the gaps in “Zoom” education and the frustrations of those involved.
The teachers mumble. The parents complain. The students stumble trying to control the changes, and I can’t say I blame them.
I am particularly sorry for young people because learning “at home” seems to turn everything into “working from home”, and no one likes homework.
It is a rupture in the freedom of youth, an interruption in the sanctuary of the house, a pain in the butt of relaxation.
Fortunately, I don’t remember that we had that many compared to the current level.
I once suggested this to my son one evening when he was sitting at the kitchen table, struggling both over fraction multiplication issues and an impending report on the root causes of the Dark Ages. .
His mother defended him from a nearby couch, saying, “He has 50 more years of history to learn than you.”
I couldn’t argue.
My fifth grade history book ended with Eisenhower’s election, and I even had an elementary school science book so old it only reported the discovery of seven planets.
Homework was something we could complete on the bus ride home.
In the meantime and now, homework seemed to have increased.
I do not know why.
Maybe the teachers wanted to check in with parents and send the little tongs home with plenty to do, knowing that kids will be asking for help and parents will realize how difficult teaching is.
This is perhaps one of those doomed descents in the fashion of pedagogues like “new mathematics”, which have never been added.
Or maybe they were just trying to let the unaware adults know that we’ve added new planets, even naming one after Mickey Mouse’s dog.
Call me a stick in the diluvium mud, but I had a hard time finding the homework useful.
In all those years of helping my son with his homework, I don’t remember seeing anything and then saying, “Hey kid, remember that. It will be useful. “
Also, when I entered college, I don’t remember a lot of homework. I remember having to “study”, but not problem, not write reports – just read and take notes, and remember what was discussed in class.
Maybe these were the skills that public school homework was trying to prepare me for.
Not the subject, but the way you master the subject.
Focus on the big topic. Break it down into smaller units. Test your knowledge.
Remember. The next night, start over.
If so, I guess I learned it – the discipline of task completion.
If so, it has proven to be helpful.
Bill Kirby has reported, photographed and commented on life in Augusta and Georgia for 45 years.