Homework Rebel

So yesterday Lily came home with her first spelling list for first grade, which was oddly a lot easier than ANY spelling list she ever had toward the end of kindergarten– where I believe her first spelling test somehow had the word “clown” on it.

Her spelling list now:


Lily reads at at least a late second grade level. She has been reading chapter books for almost a year. Obviously, she can spell these words.

Yet the spelling list came with a literal tic tac toe board of insane activities we had to do together. We were supposed to play tic tac toe with the activities to make sure we got three in a row. Examples: Make flashcards, write the words in flour in a plate, write down as many of the words as you can in one minute, do artwork with the words. Parental involvement was required in each activity.

And you know? I totally understand that these kids need to be able to spell these words and not all the kids learn them so easily. Some of these activities might help kids who have trouble with them and that’s great, but this is a huge waste of time in our household. The activities should have been optional. When I got the list, I turned to Lily and asked her how to spell each word. She could spell them all. Following that and short of a REAL worksheet she can fill out herself, that should have been the entirety of my involvement. Because you know what? I finished my first grade homework when I graduated from first grade 28 years ago.

I totally contemplated cheating on my daughter’s homework and just putting my initials on three of the tic tac toes in a row, but Lily can read. She’d totally know I’d cheated. And she’d take that as a cue that it was ok to cheat.

It’s not.

But seriously. WHAT. A. PAIN. So last night I had to spend 20 minutes helping my child participate in ridiculous activities to memorize words she already knew how to spell.

Whatever happened to just quizzing your kids on the spelling words and then being out of the loop? You REALLY expect me to make a huge mess of my kitchen by having my 6 year old write words she already knows how to spell in flour? Really?


And yes, I’m back. Bad winter, bad routine, no routine, long crazy summer and Candy Crush addiction (and Candy Crush rehab!) all gave me writer’s block for a little bit too long there, but I think I’ve conquered it. I hope. Or at least today I have. Hopefully our new and improved school schedule will keep me writing.



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2 Responses to Homework Rebel

  1. I’d be seriously questioning the ability of Lily’s teacher if she is sending home those spelling words for first grade. Those are sight words typically learned in kindergarten and are the first sounds any kid learns when learning how to read. Bring your concerns to the principal of her school and see if there’s a way he can check into the curriculum.

    • It’s the first week of school, so I’m ok with the spelling list. I’m sure it will get harder as the year goes on. These are the spelling words for the whole class and some of those kids might not remember how to spell those popcorn words. I’m just annoyed that this level of parental involvement is required on words my kid already knows… or even if she didn’t know how to spell the words.

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