Monday, February 1, 2010

Lazy teachers?

Disclaimer of sorts: This opinion is in no way a blanket generalization about teachers. Although I realize there are educational professionals who go above and beyond to take responsibility for teaching the children under their charge, I am somewhat dismayed (?), disappointed (?), discouraged (?), irritated (!) by some of the experiences I've had with my new generation of children in school. Oh, side note, Shaunalynn: You can not use this post to tell me again about homeschooling (or un-schooling) the children! :-P

My plan is not to get into a long tyrade so let's see how this goes. Since the beginning of the school year in September my son's teacher has sent home "homework" that I feel is out of line - for lack of a better word. In the sense where it's homework that I have to do and not anything he can do alone.

After a parent/teacher conference with her I did get a little leeway with having to help him write complete sentences because that was the assignment: Write a sentence about XYZ picture. She said to let them write however they can and they knew what they were writing. SIGH! How is this helpful to just write random letters pretending there words? It's one thing to play at home doing that and it's an entirely 'nother thing to do it in school or as homework. How does one grade this? Well, I'm sure it helps them with their handwriting, but it seems to be a waste of time. And the fact that I have to read instructions to him is ridiculous.

When my oldest daughter was in elementary school, the teacher (even in Amber's advanced classes) sent homework home that she had 1) explained that day in class, and 2) that they knew how to complete by looking at the work or it was sentences and words they already knew. I know for a fact that my mother did even less work with me and my homework when I was a child.

ImageChef.comMy son has more homework in kindergarten than my daughter had in high school. Really, I am not kidding. He had two projects due this month alone: One that he's already turned in about Martin Luther King Jr. and one about Jamie Foxx that I think is due next week. And there has been a variety of other homework assignments that have required a lot of work from me. He has... Wait, I'm not going to rant about that anymore.

Tonight's homework (in addition to the required reading) was put a rock in a Ziplock bag. Part two was put dirt in a Ziplock bag. Now, truthfully, this is the kind of homework I like. I sent the boy outside for a rock then I checked under the sink for some potting soil and put that in a baggy.

My problem? Why in the world didn't the teacher take the class outside to find rocks and dig some dirt? Or get a bag of potting soil at the Dollar Tree and have them scoop it into a cup? Is it just me or is that lazy?

If it's for a science project then they could have done that during science period/time. Makes sense to me. I really think I'm missing something. I'm just saying.