Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Where's the Break?

I love how schools all over America call the time off for Christmas and New Year's Day, vacation.

For most children, the time off is exactly that, time off. However, for some students, some of my children, the word break simply implies some time off mixed in with a day or two of homework and keeping up with school work.

My nine year old should be practicing his "nines" in multiplication. This mama doesn't want to quiz a reluctant child on nines.

My nine year old should be reading for 15 minutes every night. Do teachers honest believe that a kid home for Christmas vacation is going to read silently each night? He doesn't feel like reading, and frankly, I don't blame him. For some 3rd graders reading feels like school. I get that.

Thankfully my first grader has no school type expectations during his vacation although, I'm sure his teacher would appreciate his reading a few books. I told him that reading directions to constructing his new Lego's and for his new Kerplunk game counts. Don't mind the fact that Lego directions only have pictures.

We played a raucous round of Apples to Apples with the cousins on Christmas day. I'll be sure and note to his teacher that he now understands the definition of effervescent, and how Plumber's Crack could be considered Abrasive.

My biggest boy is supposed to be working on a science project. He's not so desperate to discover the amount of time it takes for chewing gum to dissolve in one's stomach. Although chewing enough gum to develop a one pound ball of bubble gum and soaking the mound in silica acid sounds intriguing, it's vacation.

My daughter needs to read, sketch, and study, none of which she is eager to begin. She sunk into the vortex of teenage stay up until midnight doing nothing and sleep in until 12:15 to wake up to a full day of doing nothing. Doing nothing all day is so exhausting. I get that one too.

So where's the break? What do people who take vacation literally do about the expectations? They must ignore them like I do. Either that, or they have those cute, over achieving kids, who loathe not staying up on school work and can read a novel a day donning a smile of pleasure. I want to borrow those kids for 24 hours to see what kind of influence they would have on my own children.

Thursday is the day. We will read, begin science projects, practice nines, and study, however, this mama will be doing it begrudgingly. After all, it's supposed to be my vacation too.

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