My dog ate my homework

Discussion in 'General Education' started by sweetlatina23, Aug 26, 2010.

  1. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    Aug 26, 2010

    I live in a border city and we have about 90% of our students that live in Mexico and cross on a daily basis. A lot of violence is going on over there, people are being killed by the drug cartel on a daily basis. THey are kidnapped, assulted, robbed completely and brutally murdered. Every child in my class can tell at least one story of something that they have had happen to them or their families. Its horrible. I have had a few kids come up to me and not do their homework because of problems. The principal has talked to me about these students so I was aware of it.

    However, this week I had one student who is now a repetitive offender in not turning n her homework. Yesterday she told me that over the summer her mom was invovled in one of the car bombs we had and now her mom cant use her right arm. So this has left my student having to do all the housework. She asked me not to tell her father that she confided this in me. I can't help but question her excuse. Should I call and ask the parents if this is true? I dont want to get myself invovled with any crime either. The violence is slowly starting to reach over. This weekend 5 shots were reached to our university, its not as safe as it use to be around here. Any advice or suggestions? :help:
     
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  3. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Aug 26, 2010

    Bump it up to administration.

    They may have more knowledge of what's going on in the girl's home.

    (And how does her mom's injury impact on HER ability to do homework?)
     
  4. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    Aug 26, 2010

    Administration doesn't know if it happened over the summer. It affects her in the fact that she says she has to care for her mother because her mom cant do a whole lot and is mentally scared. So she has to care for her, clean the house, and when its time for her homework she feels "tired".

    I just don't want to ignore it and it be the start of a new lie these kids get passed because of their situation over there. Yet, I dont want to accuse her of lying since its a TOUCHY situation at our school.
     
  5. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Aug 26, 2010

    Ouch.

    OK.

    Then, given what's going on, I think you have to give her the benefit of the doubt-- but find a way for her (and all the kids you're sure of) to get through the material anyway.

    It may mean cutting back on the homework until things settle down, or changing the way you teach if things are unlikely to settle down at all. It sound as though the issue is far bigger than this one child.

    Under normal circumstances, I give math homework every single night. But some circumstances simply are normal, and that's what you describe.

    For this poor child, and the others you mention, life has gotten in the way of school. I think you have to change the way you teach to adapt to extraordinary circumstances.
     
  6. dovian

    dovian Comrade

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    Aug 26, 2010

    I'd send this straight to the counselor, honestly.

    Beyond that - is it possible for you to give all the homework for a set period of time at once? Like a weekly packet? Then she (and anyone else who needs it) could work on it when she has time during the week, which might work better for her than every night. Sometimes for kids who are having trouble getting things done at home I will also offer the option to come eat lunch in my room and get work done. Many times they just need someone to watch them do it and a quiet place.
     
  7. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    Aug 26, 2010

    THank you both. Today I decided to let them finish their homework in class so that it will get turned in. The school has a zero tolerance on not having homework, no homework its a zero. THat affects a few of them, granted some are simply lazy. Lately, parents sign my note and dont seem to care. I think its also a transission from 5th to 6th, I had one parent tell me her daughter was too tired to do my homework. It was an assingment that would've taken her 10 minutes at most, thats a plain excuse.

    We don't have a counselor so I cant send her to anyone. A coworker and myself are starting a counseling group next week, however, its only for our 8th grade group. Thanks though, I think i just have to be understanding to all of them.
     
  8. Marci07

    Marci07 Devotee

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    Aug 27, 2010

    My heart breaks when I hear about the conditions these students face. I hope your school gets a counselor as it appears that many students from your school need one.
     
  9. UVAgrl928

    UVAgrl928 Habitué

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    Aug 27, 2010

    I would also see if you can help the family get family counseling. I don't know how it works in your area, but in the past we have been able to get a counselor to visit the home a few times a month to provide counseling for the child, as well as the parents. I'm not sure exactly how it was done (normally it is arranged through our school counselor), but this might be a possibility.
     
  10. tiki7719

    tiki7719 Companion

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    Aug 27, 2010

    Wow.... I'm not a classroom teacher yet, but how do you handle this situation when a parent says this?
     
  11. Special-t

    Special-t Enthusiast

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    Aug 27, 2010

    I think the only option in an encompassing situation, such as the one you describe (where the majority of kids are living in a war zone), is to limit homework assignments in all classes to what can be accomplished during a daily elective study hall period. If kids truly can't do any work outside of school due to ongoing situations beyond their parent's control, the school needs to find a way to provide opportunities for those kids to succeed.
     
  12. teach'ntx

    teach'ntx Comrade

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    Aug 27, 2010

    I know you teach at a private school, but a lot of the charter schools around here now have longer school days to offer time (and assistance) to the students in getting their homework done and keep them off the street.
    Is this a possibility at your school? Is there anyone in the community/church (not the teachers-unless they want to) who can volunteer to watch them during the homework time. This also gives them a longer tme in safer area....... Maybe one of the church ministries?????
    I am not suggesting to extend the teachers day!!!!!
     
  13. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    Aug 29, 2010

    well we've been in school for a month and this girl just started so i kept her during lunch, but normally i keed the schools zero tolerance on no hw = 0
    hopefully this doesnt continue on friday she forgot all ner notebooks
     
  14. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    well we dont have a church nearby we are catholic non parochial, plus our principal charges for everything and parents wont pay for that. also because so many walk to the border they have curfews to be inside by a certain time to avoid being at the wrong place when they cross. it seems so unreal bbut it happens daily over there
     
  15. jojo808

    jojo808 Comrade

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    Aug 29, 2010

    I agree. Homework just doesn't seem that important in this situation.

    On a side note-at my school HW cannot count towards a student's final grade.
     
  16. teach'ntx

    teach'ntx Comrade

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    Aug 29, 2010

    I completely understand the curfew issue!!! Though I am not on the boarder, we hear about the issues daily here!! Good luck.
     
  17. sweetlatina23

    sweetlatina23 Cohort

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    Aug 30, 2010

    Thanks all. I haven't assiged a lot of homework, anything I do I make sure to offer class time even 10 minutes. Our principal has a strict homework rule, that we have to assing it. I mentioned whats going on, she still thinks their "excuses." Today, we had a big problem because the violence was mentioned in one student's current events article and 5 students got very upset that why does our local newspaper write their cities information. I tried explaining, they didnt care. They were very close minded. It shall be a year!
     
  18. jojo808

    jojo808 Comrade

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    Aug 31, 2010

    Wow sweetlatina--that is a very difficult environment. I'm sure you are the best part of the day for many of the students!
     
  19. Rabbitt

    Rabbitt Connoisseur

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    Aug 31, 2010

    Some ideas...
    no homework
    I'm assuming she walks home, but if not, give her a clipboard and pencil for the bus.
    allow her homework to be completed on the weekend
    keep her HW basic (10 min math facts, 10 min reading)
     

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