I provide Wonderful Learning Time

"Kids, come here I have to talk to you about something."

They came in the living room and I said, "I have to tell you that I am so sorry. I found out tonight that I have been logging your attendance all wrong. When you spend 4 hours on one math assignment, I should have been giving you credit for all four hours." The look in their eyes said "Really? I can sit around and not do any work and get credit for it.. cool."

Then I said, "So everyday, I will be providing 4 and 1/2 hours of wonderful learning time and giving you credit for it. There might be one problem though. If your teacher sees that you have 12 hours of Language Arts and haven't completed anything, then she will be giving YOU a call to see why you aren't getting your work done."
The look on my daughters face was priceless. She understood immediately that this was not going to be good for her.

My son said, "I don't want to do it that way. I want to keep doing it the way we have been."

I said, "I am so sorry, Sweetie, these aren't my rules, they are the schools rules so I have to do it this new way."
He said, "Can you get me up early tomorrow so I can get started early on my school?"
I said, "No, I will be getting up at my normal time to get ready to do my job which is to provide you with 4 1/2 hours of wonderful learning time. You will have 4 1/2 hours to do your job of learning. After that, I will be doing some of my other jobs around here such as laundry and such. Feel free to get yourself up early if you want to spend some extra time on your school work."

I feel like I have a new lease on life. I am excited about school today since I don't feel like I have to be chained to school all day. If you think about it, a teacher has kids in her class from 9 to 3 or whatever the school hours are. Sure she may spend extra time preparing for school and grading papers, but she is not spending more than the allotted school day with kids not wanting to do the work. I am not going to either. I will be happier and will be able to model that happiness to my kids.

P.S. I will let the teacher know what is up so she can be sure to call THEM to talk about getting THEIR work done. Also, my kids know that I am more than willing to let them take the heat. I have done that before with other issues so they know it isn't a bluff.

Update from Mom: My son has never been so responsible in his life. My daughter has started trying to work harder but she is going to see if I really mean it and that is her choice and she will have to "suffer" her own consequences. Bummer. I, on the other hand, am a very happy mommy and learning coach!

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