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Tuesday, February 21, 2012



The Mad Homework Dash

It would seem that all my kids do during the weekdays is eat, sleep and do homework. No, it's probably more like do homework, eat while doing homework and get whatever sleep they can get after the homework is done.

As soon as they get home from school, they make a mad dash to eat lunch. Sadly, conversation is not encouraged during lunch as it takes away the precious time required to complete the day's homework. Then they make a mad dash to have a bath. Sadly, singing in the bathroom and having fun playing with soap bubbles is not encouraged either as it takes away the precious time required to complete the day's homework. Blah blah blah.

Then the homework starts. If you are in the 'smart' class which isn't very smart at all since it means more homework, the kids will be burdened with extra pages of homework from additional workbooks. The std 4 girl has to copy essays to improve on and master her Chinese Character writing. Once, I gave her 25 minutes to copy an essay as I saw she still had a lot of other work to complete. She took 2 hours! I was so exasperated, I said this won't do. You are taking too long, you will need to work faster!

So, I took the essay and copied it myself. I took an hour! The girl took 2 because she wanted to understand what she was copying and not copy blindly. That's a good practice but I say, sorry, you don't have time for that. Just copy!

Then she has to copy out maths questions from her workbook. She is not allowed to write on the workbook since it is the free workbook from school which will be passed on to another child next year. So she meticulously copies each question and tries to do the hard sums in hard pressed moments with mum shouting to her to hurry up! Each sum must be copied and written in the perfect manner too. If told to leave a line between sums and have a line drawn in between and this is not done, she fears she has to erase and redo everything. So she rubs and writes, rubs and writes to make everything perfect. Doubling the time required.

Next, she has to copy out some Chinese questions and tackles those. Mum, I don't know how to do this one, can you help? she asks. I look at the question. It says, look at the given lines of phrases, A, B, C, and D. For each one, there are 3 phrases given. Find out which line does not contain a wrong 2 worded phrase. That's easy. B is the answer. No, its not so simple mum, the other lines have mistakes in them. We have to find out what are the mistakes and write down the correct phrase for those. Oh....... That's very detailed and time consuming....

Its tea time now, sorry kids, you'll have to eat as you do your work. There isn't time! And so the mad dash continues.... Another 4 pages of English homework.... Write 2 pages of Chinese Characters... 2 pages of Bahasa Malaysia... What?! You still have to do 5 pages of Chinese&BM&Science&English work from that Magazine? Hurry up then!

2 more homework... Mum, I have to study for Ejaan and Ting Seah tomorrow and I haven't finished my art. Faster! It's dinner time! and you haven't packed your bags. It's dinner time. Stop! Stop this moment. Go and wash your hands and eat. Leave everything as it is, we'll have to continue after dinner. Eat as fast as you can. No talking.

After dinner. Hurry up its so late now, its almost bedtime. You need sleep. Come on. Pack your bag quickly. Forget about that homework. It's not important! Just answer that. But mum! I can't copy..... Just answer it! You'll have to do what you can. You need sleep! The dash heats up now. Work that has not been completed gets done in a hurry, all learning efforts are thrown out the window and mum and children dashes to complete the homework. Homework is now done for the sake of completing them or else.....the kids face the wrath of the teachers the next day and get twice the homework! If you carry anything forward, it will just accumulate and snowball.

We make a final dash, then dash to the bathroom to brush teeth, wash up and change and its lights off! No time for a book or chat. It's straight from the study table to bed. No time for a warm drink, no time to relax and wind down. It's so sad. It's mad. I'm mad!


22 comments:

  1. I guess we are in the same boat just that my girl is in kindie (final year) but workload just like Standard 1. I guess the school is getting them to prepare for next yr Std 1. @@ll I am stress too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yee Ling, The strange thing is Std 1 workload is very much less than in kindie. After kindie your girl will find std 1 a breeze especially English where all she will be required to do is draw squiggly lines, dot to dot and coloring at first.

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  2. I can understand you. I have to prepare my girls for the ejaan, spelling, and ting xie in their schools and also in their tuitions one. It is very mad.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sheoh Yan, The kids quite often have ting xie and siao kao more than once a week. Between the both of them, quite often I forget to prepare them for their ejaan, spelling and ting xie because I never quite know which falls on which day. I'm disorganized like that.

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  3. My kids all very relax. They have homework but they usually finish it in school. Don't look like they take more than an hour to do homework at home. Still lots of play time. In the evening, we are usually out playing badminton. My daughter enjoys her piano time. Maybe this is the different between chinese and kebangsaan school.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My kids have to rush through their piano as well and playground is a luxury to them, a once in a blue moon thingy. So sad.

      Delete
  4. Your girl school gave so much homework ar?

    my std 4 girl still very relax and she is happy go lucky type. so far i did not see too much homework being assigned to them. sometimes she finished all in school, if short of time, then bring back to do. Evening time, cycling and badminton is a must to her and her sister, cant miss one. I only checked their homework at night, if still have time then we will do some light revision.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Jess, wow, cycling and badminton in the evenings. That's lovely. My girl is the serious and perfectionist and diligent type and a dawdler. Those traits plus the homework take her twice the time to finish! We don't ever have time for revision. Homework is revision.

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  5. I am like you too, MG just that I only have one but you, two! Double stress! Sometimes, I really hope I can be like some of my friends, just let go and leave the job to the tuition center but I just can't.. So the mad rush continues..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Inspired Momx1, we are the tuition centre. Haha.

      Delete
  6. When my eldest goes to Std 4 next year, I wonder if she will be in the mad dash too since they are from the same school. Right now, still manageable for her. Every day from Monday - Friday is filled with activities.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think your girl will manage it better next year but just wait until you reach your dilly dally girl like this girl of mine. It will really drive you crazy when managing a dawdler's homework.

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  7. Gosh! You are scaring the sh*t out of me! My girl is going to Primary One next year and this sound like nightmare. Dont know whether my girl (and me, the mummy) can cope with all the madness. Over all, it sound sad because the kids hardly have time for themselves and chat with parents. Sigh!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha Rose. Don't worry. Primary One is easy compared to kindergarten, really. Its the craziest thing. They push them like mad in kindergarten, then they go backwards in std 1. You will have one year to relax, maybe two, then in std 3 and worse still std 4, the heat goes up but by then your kids are older too and know or rather should know better.

      Delete
  8. *sigh* are we doing the right thing by sending our kids to Chinese school? It takes the fun out of learning right?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Everything else is fine, accept the homework part. I guess we'll just have to manage it.

      Delete
  9. I am from a chinese school, but dont remember have to rush so much ..

    Just bear the heat, hopefully it will get better ...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My girl is a dawdler, that's part of the problem, I guess.

      Delete
  10. MG, I m having this mad rush/mad stress to the MAX. P is only in k1 and I really cant cope. I have left him unattended. He cannot be bothered with homework (he hates them) and the more I threaten, the more uncooperative. So I also have this tidak apa attitude. I just hope he can pick up along the way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe speak to the kindy? If they are overwhelmed at this young age then they start hating homework and you don't want that! My girl didn't go to kindy till age 6, my boy at age 5 and they had a pretty good time at kindy with lots of play.

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  11. MG, i hope this is just your busiet day, yes..no..?? ur kids must be attending those popular school with high achievement. I think the subang jaya lick hung also the same. They are pushing the students to obtain good results and thus raise the status of the school. On the contrary side, my kids' school does not give that much homework (not even half of yours), class segregation and exam paper also easier.

    My teacher friend told, govt has actually encouraged less homework more activities, less exam-oriented curriculum, but they did not implement it wholesomely. The ministry is still grading the school based on students UPSR/exam results. So, some school principle has no choice, but to push the students lor.

    More homework or less homework, both also have pros & cons....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Annie, I'd like to say that but unfortunately this is an almost daily affair. My girl asks me "How come everyday is like that?" We didn't pick the school but got sent there as the place nearer our home is full. Fortunately because I heard from my neighbour who that its even worse at the school with kids from the smart class having to attend compulsory tuition at school daily till 4pm.

      As for my boy, I am so pleased to learn that his test has been reduced from 4 times a year to 2 times a year under the new KSSR system. So at least for this coming March test, I only need to coach one. Hehe.

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