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Oh the Homework, and a Lesson in Learning Differently

So Jax has to learn French. It’s required. And boy oh boy, is it a challenge. Here’s some thoughts on homework for the differently thinking child (and their parent).

Instead of pulling your hair out, get them moving. Shout out to a dear friend whose kid sees the world differently too,  for the swing for Jax’s room. It came in handy once again as we were trying to learn some words for his French test tomorrow. He was swinging and since he was swinging, he wasn’t panicking over how hard it was for him. (Oh, and don’t get me started on the deficit my kids have in their American English only Mom trying to teach them French.)

But second, when a child has a brain that learns and retains differently, it could work better to study when they’re distracted. As in throwing nerf gun bullets at each other. This was how we marked each one we learned.

Third, yes, I sat in his room on the floor painstakingly going through every one with him. Sometimes it’s what it takes. It’s why I’m getting to the point I know I need to clear my schedule even more than I have already, so I can be more aware of what is needed and be available. I know I’m fortunate to be able to do that. Not every parent could. But I also know that we make an awful lot of sacrifices in our lives to make this space for our kids. Saying that out loud is a big deal to me, as I always feel like they get short changed because Mom is stressed and too busy. I hope it helps them.

And lastly, be okay to celebrate what your kid is good at. Jax may never be fluent in French and frankly, I’m okay with that. He is awesome at Math and spelling. He is also, fluent in humorous outtakes at just the right moment.

On the way to bed he needed to go to the bathroom. In typical boy humor he said, “I need to go peepee” just to get me going on using those words in front of a lady (fluent in humor, not manners)

And to keep it light I said, “Well, at least do it in French” to which he responded, “OK, I’ll go weewee, you know mom, as in oui-oui!” And we laughed and laughed and laughed.

Doing homework is a challenge, like just about everything else in life right now. But we made it through this night. He may not ace the test, but we ~ together ~ worked hard to do our best.

Be encouraged parents. You can do this without losing your mind. And this is what I will come back to, this writing, the next time I want to pull my hair out because I don’t know how to do the homework they’re working on.

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