Easter Sunday came and went with plenty of fanfare and family fun. The following Monday was busy because we scoop those school lunches and school breakfast bags, come home and remix them into something great. I was feeling brave and eager to put my motorized wheelchair to use, Principal Mommy was home, pretty day; we made plans to for an “early release” type of day so parents and kids could build on the weekend’s momentum. Ordinarily, wanting to continue kicking it with your kids isn’t a just cause for picking them up early from school. Here at Daddy’s Academy of Gratitude, no problem.
When Principal Mommy is not home, the students pretty much choose to skip breakfast for those precious few minutes of sleep. She was home today so shenanigans began immediately. One thing that I continue to mention but fail to address is checking what assignments have been done. I’m good at checking around breakfast, helping everyone get organized and off to the races. I’m waaaack at ensuring everything they SAY is completed, is actually complete. Most of the time, Principal Mommy will send me direct texts or screenshots of what is needed for each student. We call that the DOUBLE TEAM. She worked with kid #4 , 1st grader, and kid #3, 5th grade. I took on kid #1, high school senior, and kid #2, 8th grader. I thought the set up worked well in my favor because my two students wouldn’t need to be checked since they were soooo old and mature. WRONG!!! Both of mine gave me ragged game about finishing earlier than usual. I believed them without confirming anything and *ba da bing ba da boom* we, ALL THREE, got fussed at!
Lunch brought opportunities for my kids to correct their mistakes and earn back some laptop time. My son claimed to be done before lunch; he was not. I’ve learned that all this extra time for cleaning, chores, Gratitudes, etc. at Daddy’s Academy of Gratitude can also be used for rewards, screentime and repairs. This is what I mean. My son was either wrong or caught on his schoolwork. By allowing him some screentime, albeit reduced, I don’t lose his attention and effort for any chunks of the day. He will try even harder to stay on track, ignore his little sister’s flagrant attempts to play and prove he was simply wrong, there was no blatant effort to confuse me. Yoooo. That is real stuff right there. Both as a parent and teacher, I need his support and buy-in because it affects the overall morale of the homeschool. The same principle applies to all of the students (dem kids). I have to be selective about “busting them down” or “calling them on bullshit”. This entire thing, homeschool, Daddy’s Academy, online work, everything is new to everybody. I can’t go Gorilla Daddy when I know better. I’ve seen how kid #3 struggles to separate emotions from her effort. I’m well aware of kid #2’s need to believe that somebody believes him. For now, I will.
The Gratitude Assignment was everyone walking the neighborhood together, no phones (unless pictures), no earbuds, just moving and yapping. We had crazy fun waving at folks and observing social distancing like some kind of 80s Cosby’s family.