I have been a wife and mother for over twenty years. Now I am becoming my husband's lover, too.
We owe it all to my fellow bloggers who gave me the courage to come out to my husband as a spanko.
I do feel like this is a New Beginning for us.

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Monday, November 16, 2020

Worried about how your child is learning?

I read Morningstar’s post the other day on homeschooling. She was worried about the lil one’s school progress and if she was helping enough. I know there are thousands out there with the same worries. I want to share my opinion which is worth exactly what you are paying for it.


Of course kids need schooling, in person if it’s safe, is probably best. It addresses not only some of the education needs, but also social, emotional, nutritional even safety needs of many children.


But for the moment in our crazy world, while you should encourage your kids to do their online assignments – just remember, for your child to be successful in life they really only need two things. To know how to read (and hopefully learn to LOVE reading) and basic math.


Let’s talk math first. While you insist they give a good try to all the online teacher is giving them, behind the scenes teach them to add and subtract. YOU know how to do this, don’t worry about the half sheet explanation with number lines, boxes and arrows, teach them the way you learned. Have them memorize there multiplication tables – trust me, they don’t know them. Yes, unlike what I told my students, “You won’t always have a calculator handy…” actually now they do and will. But they still need to know, by memory, the 1’s through the 12’s tables. I say this is true for kids first -fifth, starting with the 1’s an 2’s for the little guys and moving on as they master them. 


Once these are mastered and as they are moving into middle school start working on life skill problems (using calculators are fine here – we adults do). Work on basic perimeter and area – they may need a fence or carpet someday. Start with rectangles and then work toward different shapes. You can find these formulas on line. Then work on percent – for anticipating tax, discounts and knowing how to tip.

And reading – helping them develop a love of reading is really all that’s needed. I wish every family would begin a half hour or more reading time. A time each day where you read a book aloud together, the whole family. Just make this fun – the adult can do the reading. Find books you liked as a kid, The Little House Books (I didn’t read these until after I was married and I loved them), Goosebumps books, The Hatchet series, or the Hunger Games, if you have older kids. This can continue into the teen years. Read books for grownups – the Mary Higgins Clark's books are great for holding interests. Even younger kids will be caught up in them and develop the love of hearing a great story. Pop popcorn, bring the whole family into it, make it an event if not every night, try it several times a week.


Of course they still need to read for themselves – get stories and novels below their reading level so that the reading will be easier and therefore, so much more fun. As their reading skills improve they will want harder/more interesting books. 


I’m not trying to say don’t worry it’s all going to be okay on the learning scene – but, well yes, I am saying that. Are your kids going to fall behind this year with less face to face time with their teachers? Yes! As is nearly every other child on the planet! So really are they behind or has everything just slowed a bit?


Think about your education or your child’s. My sister was a brain. Always did her homework. Well behaved, fantastic grades. Then I came along. I hated schoolwork and if I did it at all it was half-assed. All through elementary school and high school I did just enough work to mostly keep everyone off my back. I was your average low C student. 

This little fellow definitely reminds me of me. 
I was probably making up spanking stories
 most of the time I should have been studying.
And even that might not have been a waste of time.

I was a poor student until I could finally study something that interest me. When I went into the veterinary technician program I got straight A’s as well as my classes for my teaching degree later. Once I was grown and cared, I did great. 


Now my sister (the fantastic student) had a great career as a private secretary to a college administrator. She enjoys writing and has published thirty-two books.  Me (a piss poor student) had two wonderful careers as a vet tech and later as a teacher. I’ve published fifteen books. How we did in K-12 school did not determine our futures.


So while you’ll continue to worry a bit, step back and realize that whether you kids is making straight A’s or is barely scraping by he or she will grow up and find their interest in life and in all probability have a job they enjoy and can do well.


Even as long as this ‘thing’ is lasting in our world – it will eventually be over and we all go on, every student having had to deal with this serious bump in their education. It’s going to be all right.


  1. Hi PK, it certainly is a worrying and difficult time for kids, parents and teachers and I am sure there is a lot of anxiety for all.

    Thank you for sharing these wonderful words of advice from your experience as both a mother and teacher, and from your own experiences.


    1. I just feel like when we look back in ten years we'll see that educationally it wasn't that big a problem.

  2. PK hi,

    All our children are back at school and University. Very very good advice. Son loved being read to but hated reading on his own until he found a particular book he loved and then he was reading all the time. He even turned round to me and said Mom, why didn't you get me reading earlier:)


    1. My parents and sister were readers and I resented it when I was little because I felt left out. Really how good a book can a 6 or 7 year-old get into. I finally became a real reader around the age of 11. If you can't beat them, join them.

  3. Gosh PK, you echo all my thoughts about this trying time we are dealing with. We will eventually get back to ‘A’ normal!
    Hmmm wonder why we are friends...? Your ideas on reading and book ideas... similar! Lol. I read every day to our kids.

    1. I'm happy to know that you and I agree. I can't wait to be able to read to a grandchild!

  4. What a wonderful post. I'm sure it will allay the fears of the many parents that read the post. Consider publishing it on a larger scale - there are many parents who will benefit.

    1. That's an interesting thought. I may do that.

  5. That was a wonderful post! Exactly what parents need right now. I always thought that what we did with the kids outside of school was as valuable, or more so, than what they got at school.
    Rosie Dee

    1. I have a vague worry that schools are going in the wrong direction. I know they are when it comes to reading.