Best way to use day off

(10 Posts)
Everhopeful Wed 02-Oct-13 14:10:52

She's back at school today - hurrah! The tiredness and intermittent headache are still a feature, but not as bad and, since I've had mine for at least a week now, it isn't really an option to keep her off until it's completely gone.

Black Mogul, I agree DD is pretty conscientious about homework as a rule and is struggling because she's only used to having to do it once a week (primary set a weekly project). The timetabling is a bit out of synch with actual lessons and is quite uneven in one week, though fine the other, but since what she gets never quite seems to match the timetable, it hardly seems to matter.

I'm now watching her planner a LOT more closely than I was, as I was caught out when they reached full throttle and hadn't realised. I have suggested to her that it might be a better thing to do her homework in the library (open for an hour after school) before she comes home, but don't seriously expect this to happen all the time. I normally meet her partway on the journey at the moment with a snack to get her over the post-school doldrums and will make a point of not allowing her to be somewhere I'm not when she first gets home, so I can monitor a short break - sometimes I've agreed to this, but then I get caught up in other things and suddenly realise she's been playing games on the pc for an hour, at which point she'll refuse to do homework till she's had dinner. This makes it too late for my taste and I will have to get firmer about it.

cake to all for their sympathy for DD's situation!

BlackMogul Tue 01-Oct-13 10:40:02

I think there is a big step up from Primary to Secondary School and children can get overwhelmed. There is much more homework and conscientious children like to do well. 20 minutes may not be enough for some children to complete the work if the subject is new to them. For example, separate sciences, a language, even Geography and History are all taught differently at Secondary school. My children always needed to eat straight after school to get their energy levels up ready for homework so they had a drink and a healthy snack. Also, they mix with new children (and new germs) at secondary school so usually get some bug fairly quickly. Ditto University! I think she should be allowed to do as well as possible as she will not want to let her grades suffer by not completing the work. 20 minutes is a guide and the teachers may not be aware homework can take a lot longer. If it takes way longer, has she understood what she is supposed to do? Are others completing the work in the suggested time? Is the homework sensibly paced throughout the week? Most children get the hang of speeding up, (again not a feature of Primary School homework) so that several items of work can be completed each night without undue stress. Hope you all feel better soon.

Everhopeful Tue 01-Oct-13 09:11:38

Sadly, DD still isn't right this morning even after a lot of sleep and even DH (harder nut even than me) agreed, so she's off again. thanks to all involved in this thread!

Racingheart, did your friend know (or do you? Or anyone else for that matter) if homework that has a week's deadline is still meant only to take 20 mins? I know that's what it's meant to be normally. I've told her she needs to practice limiting herself to that time, even it means the work isn't as good as she'd like.

No hope of fitting a kitchen table into my 1930s-size kitchen, but she can work at the dining table, which I think she'll have to do. DH got her a desk, but I was always in two minds about that being a good idea! I agree about her doing it as soon as she comes in, though she complains that she's more tired then than later - trouble is, I've always bought that as I'm the same. What I may start doing is insisting she stays on at school to do it, though it limits my ability to check it's happened.

racingheart Mon 30-Sep-13 20:03:00

Sorry you're both feeling rough.
Think reset day was a good idea.

A friend gave me advice that has been so helpful for Yr7. She said to get them to do homework the day it's set and never the night before it's handed in. And get them to do it as soon as they come home from school, not at the end of the evening. It's really tough at the start of yr 7 to set this routine up but it's a saving grace long term.

That means they are always on top of it and end the night relaxing, not sweating over to something they're too tired to concentrate on.

Also, if set homework is supposed to be 20 mins approx, don't let them do more than 30 mins on it. If it's not finished, send it back with a note to the teacher.

Can she do it downstairs at the kitchen table so you can oversee how she's using the time? DS2 works far better under supervision. At his desk in his room he tends to day dream. DS1 works better in his room. Depends what suits them.

Everhopeful Mon 30-Sep-13 15:25:54

thanks for the reassurance Lottie - DH was not convinced, but he had no problems with this in Y7. I was rubbish, but got over it! Now finding she still has no sense of time, as she's been working on the same piece for past 4 hours and I can't seem to get her to move on! Ah well, she's going in tomorrow regardless....

Lottie4 Mon 30-Sep-13 10:51:26

I think you're done the right thing on this occasion. She's got a day to get her act together and get up to date, as well as having a rest. Do make it clear she will only get time off in the future, if you are sure she is really under the weather.

My daughter (now in Year 8) was ill twice in the first term, exactly the same thing each time she had a temperature, was off her food and pale, so I wasn't happy to send her in anyway. However, I did say if she was going to have the day off, then it would be a good idea to do some homework or revise what's she been learning if something was particularly tricky for an hour or two. Obviously if she'd been very ill, then I wouldn't have suggested this. The first time she didn't have anything to catch up on, but the second time she did so your daughter will have to bear this in mind in the future - she may get the chance to catch up on homework, but may then have more work to do in the coming days to catch up.

Hope you both feel better soon.

Everhopeful Mon 30-Sep-13 10:48:00

Thanks mmm, she started out that way to be fair to her, but I think they were building up on it and last week was probably the first time all the teachers set homework according to the timetable. I agree about time management being the priority though. What sort of incentives do you think might work? I'd like to ban screen time till it's done, but she'll really hate that! Not that it would necessarily stop me...

mmmdonuts Mon 30-Sep-13 10:42:52

Is she using her homework diary regularly? Time management is a great skill to really embed in Y7 and it will set her up well for her GCSEs if she gets the hang of it now.

Try encouraging/incentives for doing homework on the night it's set rather than the night before. Then hopefully she will end up with only a couple of pieces to do each day.

Everhopeful Mon 30-Sep-13 10:39:34

Sorry, just realised it reads as though she's been doing homework in the morning - no, she isn't awake enough for that! She's prone to stay up late to do it...which I try to discourage, but not much luck so far.

Everhopeful Mon 30-Sep-13 10:38:25

OK, DD isn't particularly well today - we've both got mild flu type symptoms, though I think I would have gone to work if I had work. She hasn't done all her homework and I was aware this was probably more of a problem than how she feels even when I let her stay off.

Normally, I'm a bit of a hard-ass on this one: however she's just started Y7, has been pretty good so far about getting up in the middle of the night early and doing homework, but has fallen behind this past week, partly due to feeling off-colour. I have presented it to her as a "reset button" to allow her to catch up on sleep and homework both, but that she really will have to be on the verge of expiry for it to happen again.

I am aware I'm inclined either to be quite nice, but repeat what needs to happen quite a lot or, when that doesn't seem to work, to get Shouty. I don't really want comments about whether I was right to allow her to stay off, but would appreciate alternative management methods appropriate to Y7!

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