Just A Thought...
By Lesley-Ann Browne
I firmly believe that parents should have to take a refresher course before they send their children to school. And definitely before they attempt to help with the notorious homework. For the first time in many years (more than I care to admit) I have to do homework. Not that I mind the work because over the years I have developed the habit of bringing work home to complete. And I don't mind spending the time assisting my child, but I just don't have a clue about the techniques that the teachers use to get the children to do the work.
The homework I am referring to is not difficult. It is attempting to show my almost-five-year-old how to form her letters and draw shapes. And it is from these attempts I have to wonder where the teachers get their patience. On several occasions I almost did the letters myself in hope of getting them completed quickly. But I assumed that the teacher would have known they were mine.
For some unknown reason, my Kindergarten child makes deliberate mistakes with the letters so they can be erased. The eraser has become the focal point of the homework. I tried to overcome this by giving her a pencil without an eraser but then the homework looked worse than if it had been erased, so I had to return the eraser. Practicing the letter C was a particularly trying experience as she insisted that because the word cookie starts with C that she had to put icing on the top of the letters. I always thought that homework was supposed to look neat and tidy but all my daughters C's end up with little squiggles of "icing" on top. I can only imagine what the teacher must think by the time the homework gets to her. But, then again, it makes me appreciate all the more the tremendous effort that must go into every lesson and every teaching day.
And just one more thing....
I've always loved this time of year. The crispness of the weather, the change of seasons, and the preparations for Thanksgiving and Christmas. People are friendlier (most of the time, although there are some who really need to work on it) and seem eager to help each other during this Holiday Season.
The season is upon us for giving and thinking of others and, although this is difficult at times, it is important to remember that there are people who, through no fault of their own, have not been able to make ends meet or who do not and will not have as much this Christmas. I have learned that poverty does not only exist in the welfare homes. But that poverty can and does often exist in the two car homes with the mortgage and the nice clothes. The "working poor". People who, through no fault of their own, have become caught up in the "buy now pay later schemes" or who have become victims of the new buzzword for the '90s, economic downsizing.
I often feel that I should be giving and doing more. Not only at this time of year but whenever the occasion arises. Nothing is more rewarding than giving just because you want to and not because of the tax receipt or because it was the "popular" thing to do. Perhaps if we all gave a little bit more there would be some happier children this Christmas and some less stressed parents who are finding it difficult to buy both food and presents this time of year. Before we buy for our own families and friends this holiday season wouldn't it feel great to give to someone else this year someone who is really in need. Because it was the right thing to do. Just a thought