On Daughters and Homework

20150117_131027This is a post about CootieGirl.

First let me say, she’s awesome in so many ways. She is silly and sweet. She makes me laugh all the time. She gives great hugs and her love language is definitely physical touch. She is almost as tall as me (scary) and she can wear my shoes now (also scary). After struggling in her early elementary school years she is now a solid B/B+ student. She loves to dance and sing even if sometimes she takes a faulty step or sings a wobbly note. She is curious about many things and always asks questions to learn more. When we need to have a serious conversation she sits and listens and provides feedback that is very helpful.

I love those things about her.

But.

BUT.

Her room is a mess. Now, I can’t judge because MY room was a mess when I was her age. But her room is a NEEDLESS mess. She doesn’t play with toys anymore, so the mess in her room is just CLOTHES. And it’s not like she has a lot of them – she really doesn’t. But what she does have apparently HATES being put in drawers because her clothes are NEVER in their drawers. No wait, I take that back. Her underwear and socks like the safety of being in drawers because they are always in the right place. It’s just her shirts, pants and skirts.

She NEEDS to get the shampoo out of her hair. My daughter is getting better about not complaining about taking showers now, but she is TERRIBLE at getting all the shampoo out of her hair. Nine times out of 10 when her hair dries it will be obvious that she didn’t get all the soap out, and I’ll make her hop in again to re-wash and rinse her hair. Our water bill is going to be HUGE next month, y’all.

If CootieGirl was a superhero, homework would be her kryptonite. My B/B+ daughter would be a B+/A student if she just DID HER HOMEWORK. Now, I can’t judge because I NEVER did my homework in high school (and have the C/B- average to show for it). I was recently contacted by the Vice Principal at her school about the fact that she was one missing assignment away from having to go to detention. DETENTION, people. The problem is that she does do homework – it seems like every night she has math, and reading, and technology. But the pesky social studies homework that doesn’t make it home because “the textbook is too heavy.”

What makes it frustrating is that her overall grades this quarter are good – the quarter ends in the next week or so, and she currently has 3 As and 2 high Bs. She has one C (Math) but that may go up because she has two assignments to turn in on which she normally gets high grades. Her year-to-date grade in Math is a B. So her overall grades are good. But she’s about to get **detention** because she only does 75% of her homework.

Last night she and I had a heart-to-heart talk on the whole homework thing. I couldn’t get mad at her because I did the exact same thing when I was her age, but what I could do was tell her how important the homework was. I told her that homework allows the concepts and facts she’s learning to really sink in so that she can be more confident learning the NEXT concept and set of facts she was going to learn. I told her that having a poor homework grade was resulting in her being a B/B+ student instead of a B+/A student. I told her the plain truth that in today’s school environment, not doing your homework will get you sent to detention, and that is unacceptable.

Consequences have been put in place should she forget her homework again this quarter and next quarter. Incentives have been put in place if she can show herself to be responsible enough to do her homework she can earn those incentives.

One big thing right now is that she wants a phone. And as she’s heading into 7th grade next school year, I’m inclined to get her one so that it’s easier to keep tabs on her. But as I told her yesterday – if she can’t even be trusted to do all her homework which keeps her grades up, how can we trust her to have and use a phone responsibly? Because having a phone will only be yet another distraction from wanting to do the homework. I’m not dumb. I know this to be true. She knows it to.

So we’ll see. We’ll see if my amazing, fantastic and awesome daughter can get it together and not only avoid detention, but avoid losing all her electronics AND the potential ability to get a phone in August. I know she can do anything she puts her mind to. Let’s just hope she puts her mind to this.

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