Or as a second grader.
In fact, I don't remember having daily homework until about 4th grade, and even then, it was mostly reading.
Aidan has homework everyday - math and spelling.
He hates it.
Wait, no. That's not a strong enough word.
He DETESTS it.
Last week, after protests and bargains on his part, bribes and promises on mine, he stopped whining and completed his math homework. But he wouldn't be silenced about his animosity towards it:
For a minute, I considered making him recopy the math problems on a clean sheet of paper since he defaced the one his teacher sent home. Then I thought about just making him erase what he'd written. Then I decided that he had a valid point, and it should be heard. He likes to learn. He really likes school. He just hates homework, and that's okay, isn't it?
What he hates about it, I've learned, is that it's just busywork. He knows the stuff. He thinks it's a waste of time to do it AGAIN when he could be riding his bike or paying Star Wars on the Wii or even feeding the cat. ANYthing but boring ol' HOMEwork.
Today, he brought home his weekly spelling list, and the assignment on Mondays is to write each spelling word three times. We battle with this every week. He hates writing those words. He's a natural speller, so he sees no point in writing the words three times each. He might as well be writing 10 paragraphs three times each. His protests are loud and lingering. He's gonna make a great attorney someday, or a tenacious reporter, or a rabid investigator, because the kid just doesn't give up when he has a point he wants to make.
Today, he made his point, and I heard him.
"Mom, I just HATE writing the words three times. Can I do something else instead? Can I think of other words that follow the same pattern?"
There's something to be said for learning to follow directions. I'm a big rule follower myself so it's hard for me to be okay with Aidan not following the directions clearly written out for him. But there's also something to be said for LEARNING. And if he has a clearer understanding about what will actually benefit him, and it's not exactly what the teacher had in mind, isn't that okay? Tonight, I decided it was. He didn't write the words three times. Instead, he came up with a list of words that followed the same pattern as his spelling words. I don't know if he'll be marked down for not completing his three-words-assignment. I do know that he'll get credit for doing the Challenging Homework Assignment. But really, I don't care about either of those things. My kid loves to learn. I want to feed that.