We all know about the stages and phases of childhood. You know, as in ‘the terrible two’s'? Did you know they cycle through those stages all through their lives?
Remember when your child first told you ‘NO!’? Believe me he is just practicing for when he becomes a teen. The problem is, as they get older they get more subtle…or maybe it’s just sneaky…lol. They don’t come right out and tell you “NO!” anymore. They find other subtler ways to test you.
Everyday when my boys come through the front door, I ask, “Do you have homework?” A lot of the time the answer is yes, and they bring it to the dining room table to work on it. As they have gotten older, (they are no longer in elementary school) and started riding the bus, I more and more often hear, “I finished it on the bus.”
There was a time this would have been a good enough answer. Somehow though, (I’m sure because of my blind trust), they have decided this is a good way to get out of doing their homework. Now, I am not a slacker parent. I am not the type of parent that gets a report card, signs it regardless of grades while handing out a 5 minute lecture of how the child needs to do better and then selfishly getting back to my soap opera, or whatever has my attention at the moment.
No, I am the parent who hands the teacher my card on the first day of school, and lets him/her know that if my child has a problem or is a problem, in any way, shape, form or fashion, that they should call me, or email me immediately. I also let them know my son has ADHD, and will use it to his advantage if they let him. He is extremely smart, and can make excellent grades, if held to task. I am the parent that keeps watch on grades because they are important to my children’s futures.
So somehow, my blind trust, that my children are doing their homework, has landed me here. I open my email to not one, but TWO emails from teachers of one child that confide that my son has not brought back a paper that I needed to sign, and that he has missing homework. Why do I get these emails, aside from the fact that my son is slacking? Because history repeats itself, and this has happened before with this child. He did not hand in a project. A project that he had over a month to do, but did not. A project that the teacher gave him an extra two weeks to do, because he is a learning disabled child. A child that takes advantage of said learning disability. Yes, a wickedly smart child.
This is a child that, at 5 yrs of age, told a teacher, “I don’t have to behave today because I forgot to take my meds.” !!!
So, I am a wiser mother now. The teachers email me when projects are coming, when tests are coming up, when my child is slacking. My son has ADHD and it kicks me in the butt often, as it did with these emails.
This is a wonderful history project about this small town where we have chosen to live, Montgomery, Texas – The birthplace of the Texas Flag. The project is not due until April, but it is a scavenger hunt. We have to take pictures of him standing in historical places that these wonderful teachers have ingeniously collected to make history fun for these children. We will take part in a tour of the beautiful old historical homes of our town, inside and out.
When I asked about the packet, he got an attitude. I could tell he was not interested. I know in my heart that he thought he could get out of doing it, if he just didn’t tell us. Was he worried about his grade? No. I don’t think they worry about that sort of thing at 13. They live for the here and now at that age. This was something that would happen in April. LOL.
We discussed the aspects of a ‘Scavenger Hunt’. We talked about history. About the Alamo (no, not a part of this project) and other famous places and times in history… and how proud he should be that he is growing up in a small town where such an important item was created. I think he got the hint. He’s kind of excited about the whole thing now.
I signed the packet and sent it back to school. My youngest son doesn’t realize he will be joining us on this trip through historical Montgomery. Me? I cannot wait to visit these places. To walk in the footsteps of people who settled this wonderful small community, and made their mark on Texas. On history.
I am a firm believer in the fact that history is something to learn FROM as well as about because, it repeats itself. If we don’t learn from our mistakes, they will happen again and again. My son will try this again, because, well, to be honest, it is what children do. They test their parents. They do this to see if you really care…how much you really care…if you STILL care, year after year after year.
I have learned, and continue to learn from our history, my history. I have after all, raised four other teens before him. Poor kid. He never had a chance!
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