Drug testing

Where Is Your Homework, Lisa?

Is Homework Really That Important?

Dear Friends,

I no longer teach in public schools, but for what seems like 100 years, I did. During my long career, I did the best I knew how to do at the time, based on where I was in life, and what I had learned about teaching.

In parenting and teaching both, however, we sometimes learn things too late. If only I could go back, I would do many things differently. One thing I would handle differently would be homework.

Today, I?m going to address an issue that raises the hair on the heads of many people: Homework. Homework is so revered in our culture that to oppose it can almost result in being one declared a heretic.

I?m going to tell you about the proverbial straw that prompted me to end homework forever. (That is, except for optional homework I gave so that the kids whose parents wanted something to occupy their kids at home other than television had something constructive to do.)

One day, I heard ?.

?Help! Help my mommy! He's beating her! And he took the baby! Help!?

Those are words of a real little girl named Lisa, who called 911 in California when her father was in one of his violent rages. A tape of the actual phone call was played at a domestic violence meeting I attended some years back in Atlanta.

We listened as the six year old child cried and begged the police to get to her mommy before it was too late. We could hear sounds in the background that reminded us the situation was both urgent and real.

I could almost picture the woman being slammed to the ground as her drunken husband held the baby above her with a smirk, reminding her that he would take that baby and she'd never see him again if she didn't get up and do as he ordered right that minute.

The police arrived, and the tape ended. My face felt wet with tears that did not stop when the speaker hit the stop button.

As I sat there, my "teacher" mind started thinking. If that little girl was in a typical classroom, the next morning, Lisa would walk into her class at school, pretending all was well. Even at age six, she knew how to play the game.

And then, before long, the teacher would ask for homework. Lisa would look through her bookbag, hoping that somehow, the homework would magically appear. But of course, the miracle she needed right then didn't happen. (She needed that miracle much more the previous night, but that?s a whole different issue.)

A moment later, she'd hear her name called. She'd go to the teacher's desk, and the teacher would speak to her firmly. "Lisa? I don't see your homework. Where is it? Did you forget to do it again?"

Lisa would lower her head, nodding nervously. "Yes, mam," she'd say.

"Lisa, I don't know what we're going to do with you, but I can tell you right now that at this rate, you are going to make an F on your report card. You won't do your homework. I have six zeros written in my grade-book for you, and this is only the second week of the quarter," the teacher informs Lisa.

Lisa says nothing, but inside, she feels her little body tensing up.

"Lisa!" the teacher snarls. "I spoke to you. WHY won?t you do your homework? You certainly won?t pass first grade if you keep this up! What happened to the note that I sent home to your parents? Did you show it to them? I bet you didn't, because I know your dad, and I know he'd see that you did your homework if he knew what was going on."

Lisa's eyes get big, and she starts to speak but she cannot get any words out.

"Lisa! WHERE IS THE NOTE I SENT HOME YESTERDAY?" the teacher says. Lisa hears snickering sounds coming from the other students, who probably are relieved that SHE is the one getting in trouble, not them.

"Ummm .... I have it at home. I forgot to show it to my mom, but I will tonight," Lisa says.

"You forgot? Bring that note AND the homework back tomorrow!" the teacher replies. "Or else!"

All of a sudden, the lights came on and I realized that the meeting was over. I was not in the mood to socialize with the other attendees. All I could focus on was getting out of the meeting.

I had been learning towards ending homework for my students, but after I heard that tape, I knew I would never make an issue of homework again. For all I knew, every child in the classroom could be living through similar nightmares at home. In the big scheme of life, is homework REALLY that important?

Quote for the week: "If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away." - Henry Thoreau (1817-1862)

I wish you peace.

Karyl
Reluctant Traveler

Karyl Chastain Beal
The Reluctant Traveler Columbia, Tennessee Mother, Writer, Teacher, Student

Arlyn's memorial website http://virtual-memoria ls.com/servlet/ViewMemorials?memid=7461&pageno=1

Grieving Parents http://grieving-parents.com

Suicide Memorial Wall http://www.suicidememorialwall.com

In The News:

Longtime wildlife biologist Jim Ozier unties and then boards a small boat on Lake Jackson, an hour south of Atlanta.
The remains of two Civil War soldiers have been discovered in a surgeon’s burial pit at Manassas National Battlefield Park in Virginia.
The famous ancient site at Stonehenge may have been built using Greek philosopher Pythagoras’ famous theorem two millennia before the mathematical equation was developed, experts say.
If you live in the Northern Hemisphere, rejoice! The summer season officially kicks off on Thursday, thanks to the summer solstice.
The University of California, Riverside, explained Monday in a news release that the moniker “honors President Barack Obama’s passion for science.”
When one of the ocean's top predators washes up dead on a beach, it's likely that something fishy must have happened. On Sunday (June 17), beachgoers found a juvenile male great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias), weighing 500 pounds (225 kilograms), and reaching 8 feet (2.4 meter) long on Beer Can Beach in Aptos, California, near Santa Cruz, reported KION.
If a giant wave of plastic garbage washing up our shores seems like the stuff of science fiction, think again.
T. rex may have been a highly successful predator, but it would have been terrible at licking stamps, lollipops or popsicles, thanks to a tongue that was likely fixed to the bottom of its mouth.
A small space rock crashed into Mars recently, and NASA has captured an amazing view of its crater grave site, as well as the trail from an avalanche triggered by the impact.
New research suggests that a newly-discovered 'structure' in the San Andreas fault line could result in a massive earthquake, often referred to as the "big one."

Poker Parenting: 4 Ways Poker Skills Produce Parenting Thrills

Even as a busy parent, I'm sure you've seen a... Read More

How Public Schools Assault Parents Values

Is there anything wrong with lying, cheating, stealing, shop-lifting, taking... Read More

Beginning the Special Education Process

Like anything else in life, there's a method to the... Read More

Gaining a Child?s Trust

My daughters and I went to the beach several weeks... Read More

5 Solid Reasons: Why Your Child Can Be An Achiever

All of us, including your child, entered this world equipped... Read More

Co-Morbidity Rates: Other Problems That May Come With ADHD

Diagnosing children and teens with ADHD can be a challenge.... Read More

Eco-Parenting

Arabella Greatorex, owner of The Natural Nursery, reports on the... Read More

What You Can Learn About Life From Your Children

You can learn a lot from children.The best part of... Read More

How to Handle Child Tantrums?

Child tantrums are a way for children to express their... Read More

Top 5 Characteristics of Good Leadership to Instill in Our Home School Children

I am sure that this list can be jogged and... Read More

Child Safety at Home

Maintaining a safe home environment for your childrenAs adults and... Read More

Teenagers and Trouble - How Parents Can Keep their Teens Out of Trouble

Teenagers are a work-in-progress, and parenting teenagers can be tricky... Read More

Calming Tips for Hyperactive Children

Parents of hyperactive children know the "Would you please just... Read More

Top 50 Father Quotations

"The greatest gift I ever had Came from God, and... Read More

Childrens Allowance

When we consider that the word allowance means, "allowing for,"... Read More

Preventing Obesity in Young Children

Do you have a young child whose weight or eating... Read More

The Secret To Keeping Kids Interested on Family Vacations

Vacations and trips are great family events, but how do... Read More

Let Your Children Name the New Baby

Choosing a baby name is an important job, so make... Read More

Back to School Success Tips

Q. With the school year just beginning, what can we... Read More

Childhood Friendships

Childhood friendships are as special as they are a necessary... Read More

Create Your Dream Family

There has been much attention in the media of late... Read More

Parenting Your Teenager: Teens and Violence

I have a bit of a different response than most... Read More

Dads - What Family Legacy Are You Passing On to Your Children?

Do you want to create a deeper, more loving relationship... Read More

Homeschooling Takes Your Child Out of Public School --- A Unique Benefit

Home-schooling removes children from public school. That alone makes home-schooling... Read More

For School Success, Dont Coddle Your Kids

Parents want their children to succeed in school. However, sometimes... Read More

induction tunnel induction self-ballasted Pete's produce ..