Kindergartner Not Doing Work!

Updated on January 14, 2014
A.S. asks from Hobbs, NM
31 answers

My oldest son is 5 and started kindergarten this year. Since school starting we have been having trouble with getting him to do his work. Recently he will hardly do any work at school. We have taken T.V. , toys, fun activities away and we have done corner time. When he comes home I make him go straight to the table and start on homework and it's a fight. He will sit at the table for hours to get only one sheet of work done. His teacher and I have both done bribery (candy, toys, etc.) and nothing is working! When I ask him why he's not doing his work he tells me cause he don't want to.. I'm not sure what else to do. Any Suggestions?
We just had another baby ( 2 months old) and unfortunately have had three deaths in our family in the last 12 months. He has had lots of changes in our house due to bringing his baby brother home but we was having these problems before having another baby. I'm not sure if the school work is related to all the changes. Any suggestion on how to get him to do his work or maybe a different way handle the situation is greatly appreciated . Thank you!

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answers from Chicago on

I'd try giving him a snack and some free play before he has to sit down at the table. He's just come from a long day at school, having to sit in a desk/at a table, and he needs some down time.

7 moms found this helpful


answers from Boston on

Was he willful and contrary before he started school? Is he willing to do other things for you, like putting all his blocks in a bin or putting laundry in the washer from the basket? Does he ever draw or scribble? Did he have preK school and was he able to follow the class routine and do the (little amount) of work required there? Can he write his name? Does he know the alphabet? Since he does not do any work at school either, has anyone considered that perhaps he CAN not? He may just feel totally out of his depth emotionally due to all the changes in life on top of the demands of school or perhaps he has a learning disability. It is really hard to tell from a short description. Perhaps request a meeting with the school counselor and principal and ask their professional opinion.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Raleigh on

I know you are strapped for time with the baby, but if you can sit down with him while he does his homework and prod him along, that might help things go a little more smoothly. This will also help you gauge if there are problems with any one thing that might be causing his reluctance to do his work. Try to make it fun.

2 moms found this helpful

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answers from Washington DC on

aw, he's only 5! heck, i got half a century on him, and can feel every mule instinct in me rising up at this regimen!
i'd take the pressure right off this little fellow. stop bribing and threatening, and definitely stop demanding that he explain his rationale to you. he's 5. he doesn't yet have the oratory skills to outline to you why he finds this entire process so abhorrent.
but abhorrent it is.
kids love to learn. they really, really do. adults and institutions and profit-driven curricula are constantly conspiring to make kids loathe learning, and yet the little hardheads just keep absorbing knowledge anyway.
there is no quick fix for this. he's has learned VERY effectively that school sucks, and homework is drudgery, and his mom and teacher are in league against him, and his only option is to stick his metaphorical (maybe literal) fingers in his ears and go LALALALALLALLLAAA every time you guys try to bully him into 'working.'
if this were my child, i'd back way off. whatever the consequences are for not doing his homework, i'd let him take them. i'd work with the teacher to figure out some sort of him-focused system of carrots and sticks, but very very loose, i.e. no candy or toys, just a smile of pride and word of praise when he applies himself, and ...... nothing.......when he doesn't. no punishment, no scolding, no fighting, no removal of privileges. just an acknowledgement 'huh. i see you're not doing your writing practice this evening.' then walk away with no judgment.
let the teacher impose whatever the school usually imposes for not doing the work. they're professionals. they should be able to manage this without beating him up.
now, i also wouldn't allow privileges. there's no need to reward a child for choosing not to do his work. but i wouldn't do corner time or attach verbal reprimands. if he chooses to read, or play with his toys, instead of working, i'd let it happen with no comment. but if he asks to watch tv or play video games or go outside to play with friends, a simple 'no, those are things you get to do after your homework' will suffice.
and leave it up to him.
he's had a lot of big changes impacting his little world. he needs a lot of love and support, and yes, boundaries and expectations. but they need to be in line with his ability to cope.
it sounds as if you are expecting your 5 year old to process like a young adult. be gentle with the little guy.

10 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

Parents, unite!

Homework for kindergarteners is just nuts. Really. Do a bit of research, and you'll learn that homework before grade 6 has no positive outcomes, and several serious negatives, including spoiling the child's natural love of learning. Some of the best schools in the world don't give homework at all.

Here's one site that encourages parents to stand up against homework for younger kids:‎, and another good summary here:

8 moms found this helpful


answers from Norfolk on

Poor kid sounds starved for attention.
I don't know of any 5 yr old who will sit at a table by himself and do the work.
You have to sit with him and go through it with him step by step and keep him on task.
You'll keep him on track and it'll be a good time for him to get some one on one attention from you.
Try to have someone else watch the baby while you work with him on his school work.
You can probably get through it with him in a lot less time than he's taking on his own.
Back off on the punishments - he's your first baby and he still needs you.
When he gets some good grades - celebrate with him!

8 moms found this helpful


answers from Redding on

I think maybe you should have a little snack prepared for him when he gets home. You know, some apple or celery slices with peanut butter (just a freak outs about allergies please), maybe some yogurt and granola or something. Give him time to decompress. Maybe sit with him and ask him how his day was. How was his lunch? What did he do at recess time? Did they make any fun crafts? I don't mean to drill the poor kid, just show an interest in how his day went and allow him the chance to express things to you. He's only 5. You don't want him burnt out on school already. If at all possible, put the new baby down for a bit of rest time so that you and your son can connect. Show an interest in what he's doing and go over the questions with him. Work with him.
I know you've been through a lot and have a new baby etc, but it could be that he's feeling lost in the shuffle and it doesn't really matter if he does his work or not. Perhaps he doesn't want to be "bribed", he just wants a little more of that one-on-one attention.

It's just my opinion.....but I would change making him go straight to the table to do his homework the minute he gets home. Oy! What a drag!

This is just an example: What if you washed dishes in a restaurant for a living? All day, every day.....dishes. Then, the minute you got home from work, you had someone ordering you into the kitchen to start washing dishes at home. "Do your work".
It might seem like drudgery with no end in sight.

Your son is only 5. Perhaps you're putting a little too much pressure on him. Change your tactics and try to find a way to convince him that homework is just a way to "teach" YOU about what he's learning. Try to make it a little more fun, at least on the home front. Give him a little time to unravel, have a snack, interact with his new sibling, etc, before being sent back to the "salt mines" of school work.

You'll get it sorted out and he'll be fine. No need for bribery. Just switch things up a bit.

Best of luck, and again, just my opinion.

8 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

He is five and in kindergarten. He should not have homework, there is no benefit (learning wise, learning habit wise or any benefit at all) to doing homework and there is a real downside. It is making him dislike school.

What kindergarten is for is learning to love learning and interact with peers and teachers. Whether he learns to read in kindergarten or in second grade, he can still go to the college of his/your dreams.

He has had a LOT of change in his life. He needs home to be a solid supportive place and school to be a place he looks forward to. Neither bribery nor punishment will get you there. A real relationship with his teacher (she makes eye contact, looks at him and uses his name when making requests) will go a long way to helping him succeed in kindergarten. I think you need to have this discussion with the teacher (and possibly the principal) as well. It is pretty unusual for an experienced kindergarten teacher to have difficulty motivating 5 year olds. They want to please their teacher and they want to learn.

ETA - I strongly suspect there will be ZERO consequences if you tell the teacher you and your son are not doing the homework. My son thought his spelling homework in first grade was a waste of time (he told me it took time away from family time and outdoor play - perhaps manipulative but absolutely 100% accurate). We discussed what he wanted to do - did he want to do it in small amounts, do it differently - he did not want to do it and he wanted the teacher to know this. I emailed her and she agreed - if it was taking time away from our family time and his physical activity - we shouldn't do it. We didn't and he can spell anyway. Because they don't need homework and they don't learn from it.

Cheryl B - Kindergarten is not preparation for the drudgery of an unfulfilling job. It is the opening of a great window into a lifetime of learning. I do agree it is not fair to expect a 5 year old to 'take his consequences'. It is the job of the parent to advocate for the child and make sure there are no consequences for doing what is best for this child.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

Stop, what YOU'RE doing isn't working. So STOP. Tell the teacher it's up to her to engage her student and when he's at home he's not at school. Tell her to figure this out because it's HER job to figure this out.

Tell her to find ways in the classroom to gain his interest, tell her she can call in the school psychologist to observe him, tell her to use every single resource she can because a 5 year old should not have to sit for HOURS doing homework. He needs to be outside playing on his bike or running amok in the park or playing with his friends in the backyard, what he's going through and learning how horrible school's just wrong.

This is a little kid who has no life, school is robbing him of his childhood so he's done with it. He's dug his heels in and is no longer participating. So stop, let him go to school and sit there every day, let him sit inside during recess and watch all his friends play outside, let him sit in a seat in the classroom that faces a blank white corner so there are no distractions keeping his focus, change it up in the classroom because it is the teacher's job to figure this out.

Let your child be a child and tell the teacher figure this out. What you're doing? It has absolutely no meaning to your little guy. All he knows is he's being punished about school and he doesn't like it.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Even a fight over his homework is, for him, a way to get attention from you.

He has started a huge change in his life (kindergarten) at precisely the same moment as another huge change (sibling) has come along, and he knows he had no say in either one. So he's asserting himself the only way he can, he's showing he's in control of the only thing he can control right now -- just saying no to schoolwork, both IN school and at home too.

You, your husband and the teacher all need to see that clearly before you proceed. This is about control and the fact he doesn't have any at a time when there are two gigantic changes being (in his mind) forced on him.

But he does have to go to school (unless...if he is young for K due to his birthday, immaturity may play a big role and it might have been better to hold him back but that ship has sailed already). As someone else noted: You are strapped for time with an infant but you really need to find some way to make homework time the time that your son gets 100 percent of your positive attention for an uninterrupted, sibling-free and substantial period. Right now homework is about getting your "negative attention" because you ask him then beg him then fuss at him then come down with consequences -- not good things but you do realize that to him they are all attention from you, even if they're negative attention--right?

So turn homework time into positive attention time. Forget candy rewards, he wants mom and dad too! If you have to have your husband shift some work time around to be home for a period at the end of the school day or if you have to find a "mother's helper" to be with the baby during Happy Homework Time, do whatever it takes. If you breastfeed and baby can take a bottle, pump and have that caretaker use a bottle so you and son are not interrupted. It sounds like a lot but you will not be doing this forever; however he does need help with all this transition and your attention can be the help he needs.

Yes, some of the issue may be too much homework -- Despite what others say, kindergarteners sometimes do have homework, but if it's too much, it may be a sign that the school's not right for him or he's not mature enough for K just yet. (I doubt it's every night, is it? or a lot?)

Even when he does not have homework, daily time with just you that is all his time would help. Yes, you were having issues before the baby came home -- but he was well aware that there was a huge change coming before the baby arrived, right? The talk preceding a new baby gets some kids as wound up as the baby's actual presence.

Work with your husband and others in your life to carve out times when you and husband can give son your postiive attention around homework so son will start to see it as a really good thing.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

Is he behind academically?? If not-tell the teacher he needs to take a month off of home work to reboot his attitude about work and get over the changes in his family. Tell the teacher you have plans to help him continue learning. Play an educational game with him every day (Hi Ho Cheerio is adding and subtracting for example, Top It or War is less than greater than practice) have him watch only educational TV Word World, Leapfrog videos) Encourage him to draw and label his drawings, to make cards for people, make signs for around the house, "Shh baby sleeping", notes for Dad; reminders (need milk and eggs)
Homework at this age should be just a few minutes and other activities are much better than worksheets!!

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

What I have done with DD (and we did with SD, too), is to do HW near an adult. So if DH was doing dinner, SD would be in the kitchen. I just sat here with DD and went through her HW and did the two pages she needed to do tonight. It is sometimes slow, but I think many kids need someone nearby. Not do do it FOR them, but to nudge them along. If he's sitting there for hours maybe he needs more attention and direction. Or maybe he does x amount and gets a break. Does he go to aftercare or is he home with you? My DD does one bit before dinner and one bit after. I told DD if she finished on time, she could have a book read to her. So I'm going to read a book now.

I would try more attention to him doing work. I bet it will go faster if you try to be patient and encouraging. Even if it's just one line at a time. I also think it helps DD to have a snack and some play time immediately after school. It's a long time since lunch.

ETA: The question isn't whether or not a kindergartener should have HW. It's that he does and should complete it, so how? I am fine with what my DD gets to do for the week and many nights she is happy to color three apples or follow a maze or label the animal/scarecrow, etc. If she feels it's simply inappropriate work or too much work, that's another discussion.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Colorado Springs on

Off the top of my head:

I'll bet you a nickel to a peanut that his attitude about school has to do with the deaths (and birth) in the family.

Of course, he can't tell you this. He doesn't know how. He may not even connect the events and his attitude (that's a more grown-uppy mental achievement). He doesn't know why he doesn't do his work - only that it's something he doesn't want to do. And the grownups' insistence might make him plant himself firmly into his position even more, because he doesn't know how to express what's going on inside him. He's the oldest he's ever been, but five is still awfully young.

If it were me, I'd talk to the teacher even more. I might even ask if there's a way the boy can take a week or two off. I don't know if a school will allow that. But you could take the pressure off that way, and let him just be a kid - let him process all the things that have been happening, play, throw nerf balls at the garage, climb on the jungle gym at the park for an hour a day, build cities with blocks and knock them down, paint pictures - whatever helps him work through his thoughts. Don't indulge him or hover over him - just let him play. He will want school after such a time of rest.

Or... you might want to talk to a child psychologist instead. I'm certainly not one.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from San Francisco on

Why the heck is the teacher giving homework to kindergarteners and ruining their family time?

Your little 5 year old should not have homework. There is no way these fights are worth it.

If it were me, I would try to make the homework fun, but if he still didn't do it, I would tell the teacher he's not going to do it.

He already spent many hours at school -- a bunch of busywork is not healthy or useful.

Gamma G. and Dana K. are 100% correct.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Los Angeles on

Get his eyes checked.
Let him have a snack & a little down time before homework?

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

How much homework does a kindergartener have? I usually let my dd come home, wind down with a snack and a video or let her run around at the park for a little while. Lots of times I would sit with her (sometimes in my lap) while she did her work. She came to like the time with me and homework was "our" time.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Austin on

I used to have a snack ready for our daughter in the car when I picked her up from kinder.

Came home, had some down time watching a cartoon. I cannot remember which one was on at that time.. If she needs a piece of fruit or some cut up vegetable sticks, she could have that too.

Then homework. I did not sit next to her, but I worked on things close by, Folding clothes, returning emails. etc..

Then she need to go outside and play until I started dinner. Then she would come inside and either play inside, read a book to me or help me with the meal.

This is pretty much the entire elementary years routine right after school. By about 3rd grade she could vary it as long as she got her homework done.

We were told that they would have homework every day. She knew this and we knew this. She was in the accelerated classes. The kids in the other classes had time to begin their homework in class. Sometimes they finished sometimes not, but they all homework everyday.

And so keeping a good schedule and routine worked best in our home.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from Washington DC on

Poor kid. He is only 5! And it sounds like he has A LOT of things going in in life that would be distracting even to adults.
You need to change your approach. First, after spending the entire day at school, it is probably not great timing to have him walk right in the door at home and immediately make him start doing school work again. He needs a break! He would benefit from a physical activity during this time to help burn some energy and be able to refocus later on.

Here is what I need to be educated on:

"Is the 'work' you are doing at home the stuff he chose not to complete during the school day? If this is the case, I understand this dilemma. It's not HOMEWORK, it's work he chose not to do in the classroom during that time."

Wow! Is this really an option for kindergarten children? They can decide on their own that they dont feel like doing the work while at school and then they can bring it home to do there? I would call BS with the school on that process! The teacher needs to figure out how to get him engaged at school. To send all the work home for you to deal with is both inappropriate and ineffective for a 5 year old child. I'd schedule a meeting with the school and work together with them to come up with a different strategy for your little guy, because the current set up is clearly not working for anyone.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Chattanooga on

I agree with giving him some down time when he first gets home.

That said, how much homework is he being given in kindergarten?? I would think, at that age, one sheet of homework is plenty!

Anyway, another idea might be to split up his homework a bit. Tell him that if he does this much (half a sheet, so many problems, whatever...) then he can take a 10 minute break, and spend that time with one-on-one play with you. Then back to it. You can gradually extend the amount he has to do in one sitting until he is able to do it all at once.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Portland on

First, as the mom of a child who didn't manage his time well in kindergarten, I want to ask:

Is the 'work' you are doing at home the stuff he chose not to complete during the school day? If this is the case, I understand this dilemma. It's not HOMEWORK, it's work he chose not to do in the classroom during that time. (added for clarity-- what I mean when I say that he "chose" not to do the work is that he wasn't tending to the task while at school, not that there was a 'choice' in the matter. Either you do the work presented or you don't. That is what I mean by *choice*.) There is a huge difference. I agree with the idea that, if he isn't doing it at school, then he loses out on his playtime at home because it *does* need to be completed. Call me a meanie, but just letting him not do it only sets unrealistic expectations for him, that he can just sail through without doing it 'because he doesn't feel like it'.

I wanted to support the teacher, so I made it clear to her that anything which was assigned during the classtime-- and that she felt they had adequate time to complete-- he would be doing in the time after school. Sometimes, too, she would use a cardboard study carrel for him when she saw that he was distracted by friends/the goings-on in the classroom.

I also realized that I often need to sit next to my son while he's working. He needs the support and that helps me help him stay on task.

Getting your son's eyes checked is a good idea. You want to go to an ophthalmologist to check for *eye teaming/eye function*, not just for vision. It is sometimes the case that a good eye doctor will catch an insufficiency which is interfering with his ability to do the work at school. (Our son has a diagnosis of ocular motor dysfunction and we started a course of eye therapy which greatly helped him. He had some other diagnoses which the therapy addressed; the ocular motor dysfunction, however, he will always have and has to learn to live with.) Vision disabilities and dysfunctions are often the culprit behind struggles in learning, so talk to your doctor and get a referral, because this is an avenue worth pursuing. Many teachers and parents get the impression that a child isn't willing to learn, but it can sometimes go deeper. Here's more information in that regard:

Other than getting his eyes checked, I'd also talk to the teacher-- ask her when she's seen this sort of refusal before and if they discovered what was behind it. Honestly, the first few months of kindergarten, we were doing eye therapy every afternoon plus the work he hadn't completed during the school day. Thank goodness he was only going half-days, because most days, I wanted to cry before it was over. We also decided to skip summer camps and spend the money on tutoring with his K teacher and this was a very good investment. He went once a week for two hour sessions and really developed his confidence-- he had left K doing his reading, writing and math at grade level and has continued to shine this year. We've only had a couple days in first grade so far that he's chosen not to manage his class time well and needed to finish work at home. AND in first, they have homework too. It's been a good year. I caught some flak from some people about putting him in tutoring over the summer, but honestly, if we hadn't, he'd have been out of the habit of doing the work and would not have developed the level of confidence and proficiency he's attained. It makes all the difference. This year has been SO much better because of it. Hang in there! It sounds like you are aware of the extenuating factors... one other thing to add-- I wouldn't make just homework time the only time you spend with him. "Hey, if you can get this done, I will have time to do X with you for a while." Try giving him a reward of 20 minutes of time with you, whenever possible. If you think this might be an attention-getting behavior, this would be an excellent incentive. Good luck!

To Agent M: The teacher didn't suggest this-- she had her hands full with 26 students, *I* was the one to back her up and told her that if he wasn't completing the work at school (spacing out, talking with other kids, etc), I would have him do it at home. Not as an 'option' but as a natural consequence of not completing it in the reasonable time the teacher allowed for this. This was to teach him that work MUST be done and if you don't do it at school, you lose your playtime at home, because avoidance doesn't fly with me. I believe in FULLY supporting my son's teachers, so the CONSEQUENCE of not completing it was to do it at home. Because I followed through, we really don't have that problem this year.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

My brother was made to sit at the homework table until the homework was done. It took him hours. Largely because he would daydream, agonize, curse the gods, curse his fate, curse the teacher, curse formal education, Contemplate loopholes in the assignment, go to the bathroom and get a glass of water umpteen times. I am 2.5 years older than him. Mine would be finished within 1/2 an hour, and then I'd be off doing something else.

He grew up and ultimately took charge and learned time management skills, and is now a mechanical engineer.

I wonder though, if someone had taught him time management/ task management earlier if he wouldn't have had a better time of things.

The school should be able to help you in this regard. They might have some strategies. I don't know of any, because I never had to figure out how to do this, getting to it, and getting the job done came naturally to me.

F. B.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Honolulu on

1) what time is he getting home from school? Right after school, or is he in after care? If in after care, they often have the kids do their homework. Or if not, by the time a kid gets home from school, after the parents finish work, that is "late" for a kid. Meaning, by the time they get home, at say after 5:00pm, they are (a) tired and, (b) hungry. And (c) in combination... that makes for a TIRED kid who cannot concentrate etc. after getting home.

2) feed him a snack after school, once he gets home. Time it. LET him deflate/unwind after school. Then, do homework. After school and kid needs to, transition. They are pent up all day at school, and tired, and hungry. Kindergarten kids have lunch, early. And by the time school ends, that is several hours, later. They need a snack to keep themselves going.
I have always done that with my kids, once they entered elementary.

3) Is your son, getting enough, sleep, nightly???? If not, then you NEED to make sure, he gets to bed at a proper time. Lack of sleep... causes all sorts of problems in kids, at school. They are groggy/fussy/disobedient/cannot concentrate, etc. I work at an elementary school... and EVERYday, I see kids that lack sleep. They TELL, me. And tired kids... often cannot even eat, lunch. I see, it. Everyday. They will actually TELL me "I'm tired, I can't eat..." and they are laying their heads on the table. And tired kids cannot concentrate, much less concentrate on school work, all day long. And they don't react, on par, to directions, either. From the Teacher.

4) Your son needs to do his homework. Or he will not make it to the next grade. BUT, at this age and grade... a parent, needs to... help their kid do homework. Not doing it FOR them, but you need to.... gauge your child, sit near them, look over what they bring home... and know, what your child is to do. And clarify things etc. They are not 3rd graders, by which time a kid is independent enough and aware of the school routines, to then do it "on their own."

5) Provide, a quiet.... calm... place for your son to do his work. Tell him, he can deflate/unwind first. THEN, it is homework. I tell my kids they have 1/2 hour after school to unwind. At which time they are having their hearty sized snack. THEN, they do homework. And per my kids when they were that age and in Kindergarten, I am there, with them, as they do their homework. And/or I am checking on them. Kids this age are, young. So you need to prompt them and help them, do it. And pace, the child.

6) Yes your son has had a lot of changes, and a new sibling only 2 months old. So, you need to, help him along... creating a routine with him... and just because he is the "eldest" sibling... it does not mean that they are, "older" and can behave as an eldest. Your son is still, young.

I am surprised that the Teacher is not able to get him, to do his work per in-class work.
What exactly is the kind of homework he is getting?
At this age/grade, is is usually not much.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Beaumont on

I would take him out and give him another year to be a kid and then try it again next year. It should not be hard and miserable.

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answers from Detroit on

I second the idea of seeing a therapist. My five year old only needed a few months-but they taught both her and I several techniques and gave us several ideas. She misses her counselor. My dad passed in 2012 and my five year old will still sometimes have melt downs 'missing papa'. She also relishes her baby role and would be devastated if she were no longer the baby.
As for the work-can you find a sitter for the baby and volunteer in class once in a while? Perhaps that will give you some insight.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Philadelphia on

My son is also in kindergarden and when he started getting homework, I would set a time for him to do it. He comes home about 3:45 and we talk about what he did at school for a bit then he gets play time around 5 or 5:30 it's homework time. Sometimes I sit with him in the kitchen while he does it and when I don't, I am doing stuff in the kitchen so I am nearby.
Instead of making him do homework as soon as he gets home, give him playtime. I mean, who wants to walk in the door from school only to do more work. Set a time to do it. No butts about it and sit down with him while he does it. Try that.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Colorado Springs on

I like this site, The Homework Lady, check the Homework & Families link. All Kindergarten homework should be familiy or parent/child homework and fun. I agree with the STOP. You don't want him to hate school and learning. Learning should be fun.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Abilene on

Exactly what Suz T. Said.

If maturity is the issue than repeating kindergarten isn't a bad thing either. 5 is young. My daughter started K at 5 and turned 6 in June after completing K. If I had it to do over I would start her at 6. She was the youngest of her class and although she did fine I think starting at 6 would've been better.

Please don't set the tone of hating school now. It will be drudgery for him if this path is continued.


1 mom found this helpful


answers from Chicago on

I had this issue with my son and he loathed homework. He would cry and have little tantrums. I was surprised he had any homework at this age but Kindergarten is the new first grade! I had a couple long phone conversations with his teacher and she gave me great input. She definitely told me to make it fun and always positive.

I would talk with your sons teacher for insight. She's an expert.

It turned out it was too much for our DS and we had him repeat kinder. He's now in first grade and doesn't love homework. He still finds it frustrating so we don't push it right after school but do it before or after dinner and keep it simple. We do a little more on weekends since he's not so tired from the school day.



answers from Seattle on

Allow him to have a few minutes of downtime once he gets home then move onto the homework. I do that with my autistic 7 year old son who is in the 1st grade. Also, we have a routine set up to where in our case my son can quote me how things are going to go: "first we dance/sing/talk for a minute, then we change clothes, then we do homework and then play game." I highly recommend having a routine for homework. Good luck.



answers from Miami on

Kinder is a lot of work. How did he fare the first few months, especially before the baby was born? Did he work in the class then?

I would go talk to a child psychologist, to be honest. Getting advice from them would be valuable. You aren't doing him any favors by making him sit for hours at home. That borders on abusive, though I know you won't like me saying that word here. I am positive that a child psychologist will tell you the longterm damage you could be doing to your child. He has already been in school all day long - this isn't 3rd grade...

He is 5. You need to remember that. Go get some help before your child does this for the rest of his school years.



answers from San Francisco on

I'm sorry - I've read only a few other responses and I can't believe that people are saying not to worry about it; let him suffer the consequences; he's learned that school work is drugery so let it go. BS!!!!! Your job as his parent is to prepare him for the REAL world. In the REAL world we have to do things we don't want to do/are boring to do just because it's what we have to do. To let him skip homework without consequences is NOT sending the right message.

If it were me, I would first give him a bit of time after school to unwind, but not so much that he is out of "school" mode. Perhaps 15 - 20 minutes for a snack and some conversation with mom. Then, to the homework table he goes.

When he goes to the homework table, be very clear with him. We are going to do this homework and if you do not cooperate, you will put your pjs on and go to bed. You see, if you don't work when you're supposed to work, then there is absolute NO PLAY TIME! Work before pleasure! And if he's not going to play and is just going to sit in his room, he might as well go to bed.

It won't take long for him to realize that if he wants to do anything at all other than go to school and then go to bed, he must do his school work.

There should be no bribery or anything else. Matter of fact - you do this or you do that, but you will do one or the other.

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