To be a bit annoyed with teacher's insistence

(203 Posts)
coffeeoverthekids Thu 27-Oct-16 00:16:20

My son is five and has gone into year one this year.

They have started writing letters to pen pals at another school that the part time teacher has an affiliation with. She is semi retired but does a few mornings/afternoons at each school.

DS hadn't finished his pen pal letter and she sent it home with him attached with the note 'Will be perfect for X to finish in bed, need for tomorrow as am taking the letters for the children'.

I read it and it really annoyed me. That day he had his usual reading book and some maths homework, already an hour of work. AIBU to think that that is more than enough and if a five year old doesn't 'finish his letter' (she had made him rub out his name because he finished mid sentence).

ThatGingerOne Thu 27-Oct-16 00:19:11

Too much homework is a pet peeve of mine because teachers never seem to get together and work out how much they're giving out at one time - this is in every age group and year.

When was the letter originally given and was there a date set for it to be done? If she had given enough time and set a date for it to be completed I can see where she is coming from.

DefinitelyNotAJourno Thu 27-Oct-16 00:21:04

An hour of homework is far too much for a five year old.

I agree with you OP.

OlennasWimple Thu 27-Oct-16 00:24:45

An hour is far too much! Should it be taking so long? I was a bit slipshod about homework at that age - after about 20 mins I would leave it and send it back incomplete. There isn't much to be gained by making 5yo do that much homework IMHO

OlennasWimple Thu 27-Oct-16 00:25:36

Meant to say - in this scenario, I would have done the letter and some short reading, but left the maths

Dontpanicpyke Thu 27-Oct-16 00:27:02

Oh love just write in the history mework diary or communication book that ds had done enough homework and fell asleep.

Seriously he's s baby. It's your control for now. Just say no.

With our 4 we did reading and that was enough. You sometimes have to just say no to teachers and put your foot down.

Time enough for homework when they older.

ShoeEatingMonster Thu 27-Oct-16 00:28:10

Reading and maths sheet shouldn't take an hour. Either it's been pitched wrong or dc is fighting it?
I'm a teacher. I'd rather you did the letter and left reading and maths for one night. Out of interest when was the maths given and when was it due in?

catkind Thu 27-Oct-16 00:28:58

Writing letters in bed? What an odd idea, and odd to tell you where/when he should do the thing in the first place. But couldn't he just have finished off the sentence and signed his name, that should be a 2 minute job?

I'd be objecting much more to the hour of reading and maths. Surely it's not supposed to take that long? If it's taking him longer than it should it's probably better that they know so they can set less rather than keeping ploughing through it. I'd do 10 minutes of each and then stop, and that's still more than my year 3 gets.

GraceGrape Thu 27-Oct-16 00:44:59

Could you check how much time they had to finish it in class and if there was a reason he didn't finish it? I occasionally would send work home with someone who had really hadn't made the effort to do it in class. I wouldn't expect them to spend more than 10/15 minutes on it though.

MagikarpetRide Thu 27-Oct-16 00:54:16

We've already had words with DD's teacher (Y1). We've said we will always encourage her and help her, but we won't battle with her whilst she's too young to take the homework responsibility herself. Her teacher just told her it meant she would have to sit with the teacher or TA to finish it in playtime instead. DD is now more receptive to homework, which is fine. But I still won't overly push her at this stage.

tararabumdeay Thu 27-Oct-16 01:09:53

Good old fashioned working to a deadline.

ThatGingerOne Thu 27-Oct-16 01:10:16

I agree with GraceGrape which is why I asked about the date it was set and due.

Also I don't think doing it in bed is a good idea. That is time for him to settle down, not do work.

Italiangreyhound Thu 27-Oct-16 01:51:20

Home work at 5, after 6 hours at school. CRAZY. Most adults work a 7 or 8 hour day come home and have from 6.00 to 11 at home to 'relax'. Imagine walking in the door to an hour or two of work of an evening!

I think the pen pal thing sounds like a nice idea, but I think they are too young for it.

I would object to being told my child needed to finish a letter (which is clearly of more interest to the teacher than the child), I would object to the suggestion he should write in bed; bed is for sleeping in (at that age!).
I would object to my child having maths home work at five. Even the reading should be optional.

I am just a whole big ball of objections!

Google 'How useful is homework for primary aged children'

The top search that came up when I did that was this...

www.telegraph.co.uk/education/educationnews/11140668/Homework-damages-primary-age-pupils.html

(it's from 2014)

Italiangreyhound Thu 27-Oct-16 02:00:58

GraceGrape, re " I occasionally would send work home with someone who had really hadn't made the effort to do it in class." I am just curious why you would think a child who was not motivated to work in school with the teacher amid a class of other children working harder than themselves would be motivated to work at home without any of those things?

Maybe it works brilliantly because maybe there is a sanction if it is not done, I don't know. My dyslexic dd did not get on with homework in primary until Year 6 but now at secondary (Year 7) she is actually doing it and seems very motivated (and possibly not just to avoid the sanctions!).

I'm not being picky, and I am not a trained teacher, although I've taught language. But as a mum I was on the receiving end of a child who really did not want to do homework. It caused massive upset at home, which did not result in any work being done. I was almost at the stage of wanting to do it myself because it caused so much upset.

By contract, now, my son has about half an hour a week, which he seems happy to do (at 6) and some reading, which he struggles with (not because he cannot read, he can).

As a parent I am very negative about home work! But feeling better about it now dd is actually willing/keen to do it.

BummyMummy77 Thu 27-Oct-16 02:05:18

Five year olds get homework?! That's insane. And incredibly sad.

CaptainCabinets Thu 27-Oct-16 02:15:59

I'd help him finish the letter. It'll take five minutes and there'll be a child at the other school with no letter to open if your DS doesn't write one. 😕

Italiangreyhound Thu 27-Oct-16 02:21:19

CaptainCabinets That is a good idea, but doesn't that rather guilt trip a 5 year old! "There'll be a child at the other school with no letter to open because you could not or would not write a letter." At 5! Too much!

This is a teacher's project, not a child's. IMHO.

upthewolves Thu 27-Oct-16 02:44:10

In bed?!? And on top of an hour of other work? That is ridiculous. And I say that as a former primary school teacher! I would ignore it. If she didn't leave enough time for the class to complete the work before she went to the other school, that is an issue with her planning. If she did, and your son just took longer than the others (for whatever reason, that is just the nature of a class of five year olds. So one kid in the other class might not get a letter if he doesn't do it... Same result if one of your son's class had been absent that day. The risk was always there! Seriously, I would just tell the teacher he had enough to be getting on with.

MrsTerryPratchett Thu 27-Oct-16 02:58:02

Why the hell teachers give homework when there's very good evidence it does no good in primary, I'll never know.

Instill a love of learning, the world, books and discovery. Plus lots of exercise and good food and it will all come good in the end.

lazydog Thu 27-Oct-16 03:08:07

That sounds so wrong to me. Far too much for such a youngster sad I'd not make him do it.

Neither of mine got regular homework at that age. And if they ever did have any, the rule of thumb we/they were given was to spend no more than 10 minutes per grade-year, per night, so in grade 1 (when they'd already have been a year older than your ds) only 10 mins!!

Even in grade 7 (i.e. just before leaving elementary school - they don't start highschool until they're ~13yrs old over here) it was still pretty rare for them to even have any homework unless they'd been arsing around in class and hadn't finished what was expected of them

DS1 is now in grade 12 (last year of school) and he soon adjusted to having homework when he was in the highschool, just as ds2 is right now in grade 8. DS1's just been awarded an academic scholarship for his chosen university degree course, so lack of (primary school equivalent) homework obviously did him no harm, and personally I think if he'd had tons of homework at such a young age he'd probably have been less enthused about learning.

RebootYourEngine Thu 27-Oct-16 05:18:20

I agree with captain

What kind of letter is this teacher expectinh?

The children are 5 yrs old. It should be no more than.

Hello my name is X i am 5 yrs old and i like blah blah blah. Maybe with a drawingnat the bottom.

Mummyoflittledragon Thu 27-Oct-16 05:54:08

You don't need to read every night. Our school asks for at least 20 mins 3 times a week now that dd is 8 and in yr 4. Lots of 4/5/6 yr olds refuse to read or are reluctant readers, which is also ok because most of them can read quite competently by 7. At your sons age, dd went a month or more at times without reading to me because she was put off. They she'd suddenly want to read every night. Never read in the holidays. She reads well now.

I agree with pps that the letter and maths is way ott. Hope you finished the sentence on the letter, maybe got him to draw a picture. That should be enough. Either ignore the maths or do it another day. Dd sometimes didn't do her homework when she was yr1 or 2. She wants to do it now.

Homework may be good fun for some kids and not for others. Our school used to give a choice of 2 or 3 tasks in yr1 and yr2 to accommodate different learning styles. And there were no reprisals for not completing it.

pollyglot Thu 27-Oct-16 06:00:32

Children should NOT have homework! (Of course, if all parents would read with their children every night...)

Fairybells Thu 27-Oct-16 06:02:09

This makes me so sad, 5 year old with homework after being in school for 6 hours already! Kids that age should be playing and learning through play! Too much too soon!

sofato5miles Thu 27-Oct-16 06:05:01

I'd have finished the letter myself and not done the other homework. No point stressing my child over it.

With my three childten we had an utter hands off approach until they were 7, when we then focused a bit more as they seemed more 'ready'.

However, we read to them every night, are engaged and i was happy to chat with the teachers about it.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now