Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Homework Help Desk: In the Trenches

My daughter has to choose a poem, memorize it, and recite it in front of her class on Friday.
This evening my daughter has been complaining vociferously, cursing poetry, having to read it is a bore, having to memorize it is a waste, having to recite it is an indignity, having to listen to other people recite it is an injustice of great magnitude.

My daughter hasn't shared her chosen poem with me, she's too nervous. But she asked me for some advice anyway, and I stupidly offered her some.

I cautioned her against reciting poetry in that horrid monotone that people often adopt when reading poetry. I suggested she kick that approach to the curb and that she adopt a more natural tone.

She stared at me with her withering stare of pure disdain. But poetry isn't NATURAL, MOTHER.

I mentioned I would have loved having an opportunity to recite poetry when I was in school. My son said he loved to read, memorize, and recite poetry. My daughter glared at me, then turned the glare on her brother and said, "I didn't ask to be born into this family."


My go to method for alleviating stress and sorrow is to act like a fool and incite riotous laughter from the children, so in that spirit, I performed an interpretive recitation of my son's spelling lesson. I was brilliant, my performance was a hit. Both kids laughed, everybody felt better.

My job was done.

As I stood up from the table my girl wrapped her arms around me and gave me a hug.

My girl went back to her work, happily abandoning poetry for the surety of science.

My son set to work on his homework too, part of which was to write an acrostic poem.

This is what he came up with:

High winds
Run for your life
Can cause mass destruction
An ambulance is
Needed --

I think this is a super acrostic poem. I wonder if perhaps he'll be docked points for the repetition of the word run ... but I think using run twice works here, it gives the the poem a sense of urgency, and perhaps the "It  Can cause mass destruction" isn't what the teacher is looking for, but again, I think his approach is bold and innovative. Go poetry boy! Go go!!

The best part of  tonight's homework help desk came later.

My son's spelling assignment was to write a letter to a cowboy or cowgirl (I have no freaking idea why a cowperson, but there it is) using four words from his spelling list.

This is what he came up with:

Dear Cowboy Bob,

I heard your fifteen year old mustang impaled you with a fragment of goggles. Hope you live.


That right there, people, that's what's known as a "Pièce de  freaking résistance".


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