Today's scenario...I am sitting in my dining room with child #2 supervising while he writes out thank you notes from his birthday party.  When I announced that this activity must take place, he reminded me that he "said thank you when I opened the presents".  Yeah, duh.  Call me crazy or old fashioned, but I'm a firm believer in handwritten thank you notes.  But now I wish I wasn't.  Fuck it, yep, he DID say thank as he opened them.  As far as I'm concerned that is enough because this is fucking torture.  I want to take  his pencil out of his hands and stab myself in the eyes repeatedly.  I want to take this stack of fucking Star Wars themed thank you notes and slice them up and down various parts of my body inflicting horrendous paper cuts.  And then I would roll around in lemon juice just for good measure.  Then I will overenthusiastically lick the adhesive on the envelopes in the hopes that they are poisoned and will take me out of my misery.

Getting my son to do anything other than stage a battle with action figures, legos, and qtips is like getting a Republican and a Democrat to agree that Obama is doing a great job.  If I need to engage him in an activity that requires any sort of reading or writing I have to give myself a mental pep talk for hours leading up to the task.  I promise myself that I will be patient with him, use gentle reminders and soft, calming tones.  That typically lasts for about 12 seconds.  Some of my biggest frustrations are (but not limited to)...

Attention span:

He has none.  Now this is the same kid who can set up aforementioned battle and spend literally HOURS pretending the Republic is attacking the Clones (or however the hell it goes)  A pile of legos can be given undivided attention for a full day.  But if it requires reading, writing, or anything involving school he shuts down.  Practicing reading flash cards results in him rolling around on the kitchen floor, last time he was down there he was thrilled to find a stray french fry under the oven....THAT captivated his attention for at least 10 minutes.  While we have been sitting here in the dining room (we're now at over 90 minutes...with a lunch break and 5 bathroom breaks) he has thrown himself off his chair no fewer than a dozen times, blown 17 raspberries onto his arm, picked his nose with his pencil at least 5 times, crawled under the table a few times, and has tried to engage me in discussions about everything from the recipe I am using for dinner tonight to whether or not dinosaurs could run faster than his dad's motorcycle.


I have none.  I will fully admit that.  And yes, I am a teacher.  However, I teach older students who, a large majority of the time, can be left to their own devices.  I super suck at working with younger children.  I especially super suck at working with my own young children.  I find myself grinding my teeth and clenching my jaw when we are doing something that SHOULD be a relatively easy task.  Or at least *I* think it should be easy.  Not really sure what the hell is wrong with my kids.  Idiots.

Basic skills:

I really shouldn't even comment on this because I will likely piss off other parents and educators of young minds everywhere. I do NOT like working with my children in kindergarten and first grade.  It is painful. It is frustrating. And yes, at times it makes me feel like I have FAILED my children intellectually...I feel like I should have taught them all of this before entering school, it's not for lack of trying, I found a Star Wars character that corresponds with EVERY GODDAMN LETTER of the alphabet  to help my son learn his letters...and even that didn't work, it held his interest for about 12 seconds longer than the 47 ABC books we have so that was kind of a downer for me...thankfully he has learned his letters and now, heaven help me, we're working on reading....working with beginning readers on basic reading skills SUCKS MY BIG WHITE ASS...

"buddy...you JUST read that word on the last page....and the 12 pages before that...and in every fucking book we've EVER.READ"

"just sound it out...one letter at a time...that word RIGHT.THERE...don't look at me, look at the BOOK" (trying really hard not to increase the volume of my voice)

"yep, sound it out...**IN MY HEAD: DUDE ARE YOU FUCKING SERIOUS RIGHT NOW?????***...um, buddy P-I-L-E does not spell PRESIDENT"  Funny thing was, with that one, he was on the right track with sounding it out great, put all of the letters/sounds together and then SOMEHOW it morphed into PRESIDENT.  Fuck...well Dan Quayle DID kind of help run the country for a while so maybe he does have a chance?

It's just such a slow, painful process...GOD BLESS elementary school teachers.  I should have made it a habit to send in a bottle of SOMETHING for each of my child's teachers every Friday.  Seriously.  They must have the patience of saints, whereas I should likely have my children taken away from me because I can't even make it through a goddamn Little Critter book without wanting to cause bodily harm.

PLEASE tell me I'm not the only one???  I made it through with my oldest and she's now making straight A's and cries in heap of disappointed hormones if she gets a B.  I know things will be different with my son, he just doesn't seem to care.  He just can't be bothered but I KNOW he needs the basics to get by in life.  His teachers can't do it all unfortunately...or CAN THEY?????  Can I give up completely?  Just kidding...kind of....


Anonymous said...
January 24, 2012 at 9:42 AM

I have that same battle with my kids. The oldest is just not interested and the 5 year old well... I have the same problem with her reading. My 5yo sounds things out beautifully only to get a completely random word that means nothing. I have told her on many occasions "it's the same word that we have seen in the book on.every.page!" I could not and would not be a teacher. God bless them.

Anonymous said...
January 24, 2012 at 9:43 AM

Shit you are me... that is sooo me in every way... I love it... i was just reading about myself....LMAOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

Sarmamc said...
January 24, 2012 at 12:15 PM

You are so right. My girlfriends and I have discussed these two very topics in the past two weeks with essentially the same conclusions.

Anonymous said...
January 24, 2012 at 5:07 PM

Hilarious! Your son's birthday party thank-you notes were a precursor to his graduation party thank-you notes...Can you imagine going through graduation party thank-you note writing for a 300 guest party? "Come on buddy...You can handle writing out 5 a day can't you?" My oldest son's graduation party was on June 15th...The last thank-you note was sent out on August 5th!...It was a stressful summer for me to say the least! lol

Amy Lee said...
January 25, 2012 at 12:30 AM

You're not the only one.

I HATE HATE anything that has to do with school work and my children. Someone once suggested to me that I should homeschool my kids.

I laughed my ass off while punching her in the face.

And remind me to never use a pencil in your house, k? ;)

Anonymous said...
January 25, 2012 at 10:16 AM

Bless you! So great to know I'm not alone when I chuck a Little Critters book across the room and conclude that we're simply done here.

Anonymous said...
February 8, 2012 at 7:06 PM

Holy shit, I didn't know I wrote this blog. Damn woman, down to the fact that I am a teacher too. Bless your heart, I'll see you on the bus to hell for how I've had 0 patience with helping with homework. Hate to ruin the party, but it doesn't get any better come third grade...PS...I'll be driving the bus!

Anonymous said...
October 2, 2012 at 12:51 PM

All I can say is thank God I'm not the only one.

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