Homework Blues

One of my new found responsibilities as a pseudo parent is to help assist HRH  complete her homework every so often.  On those days when mom isn’t here, we make it a routine to work on her assigned homework while I prepare dinner, or maybe in the morning before school as I make us breakfast.

Right now it’s pretty easy: reading, spelling, basic arithmetic, that kind of shit.  Stuff I can totally do even being the complete moron that I am.  Let’s face it, later, when she starts bringing home complex fractions, biology or, God help me, algebra, she’ll finally figure out once and for all what a total mental midget I am.  Yup, dumb as a box of hammers.  But, right now, I got it covered.

I have noticed however, that she isn’t very motivated to actually do her homework.  I know, I know, what seven-year-old kid is right?  But I’m not speaking in the usual ‘homework sucks’ kind of vernacular here, I’m speaking more to the point that she gives up quickly when she is challenged.  Hell, she quits faster than the time it takes me to pour the milk over her Cheerios.  I don’t mind her taking a while to come up with the answers but, geez, at least give it an honest shot will ya?  I find this behavior completely frustrating.  It’s enough to make me pull a James Brown and end up on the roof in my skid-marked skivvies and shooting a gun into the sky.

But I can’t get angry with her and, thankfully, there are no guns in the house.  This leaves me no other choice then but to find other alternatives to motivate her.  So our routine this morning, as she struggled to find specific words in her ‘Word Search’ puzzle went a little something like this:

HRH“It’s not there”
Me (having looked for, like, two nano-seconds): “Yes it is.”
HRH: “No it’s not. I already looked.”
Me: “No you didn’t. You just gave up after three seconds.”
HRH: (after 3 more seconds) “It’s not there.”
Me: “Well, you can’t have your breakfast bagel until you find it.”
HRH: (1 second later) “There is it!  Can I have my bagel now?”

Then, just as immediately as she had taken that first bite into her bagel and moved onto the next word in her puzzle:

HRH: “It’s not there.”

Face, meet palm…

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