The Dog Ate Our Homework


Parent teacher conferences are coming up soon, and I’ll admit to a certain amount of nervousness towards them this year. Not because of anything that might be said about my daughter. She’s smart, witty, polite, friendly and too damn cute to be considered anything other than a pleasure to have in class I’m sure. I’m nervous about what might be said about me. I don’t always do my homework.

Every night we have a box of small flash cards to go through. Some are letters, some numbers, some beginner words such as “hat” or “car”. There are also words that rhymes must be found for and fifteen minutes of reading that need to be documented. None of it takes very long and because of my work schedule it’s much more often the responsibility of my wife than I. She seems to have no problem getting it done, so what’s my problem?

My problem is that I don’t want to do it, I want to go play. My daughter is five. I wake her up at 7:00 to start getting ready and she’s not home until 3:30. She wants to play too, and I don’t have nearly enough time to do that with her. There is dinner to be made and eaten, baths to take, episodes of Spongebob Squarepants that we haven’t seen yet. Reading has always been a part of her bedtime routine, but if we spend too much time at the playground or putting together railroad tracks to get to the rest, I don’t think that is going to inhibit her ability to get into the college of her choice later in life.




Education will always be highly prioritized and will never be confined solely to school. While playing we will count how many train cars are connected to each other, adding and subtracting them as we go. We’ll flip through our new Batman comic and try to sound out all the “pows” and “bams”.  She’ll learn how to rhyme the old fashioned way, by listening to west coast gangsta rap.




Chances are that the subject will never come up, but if it does I’ll try not to take it as a personal questioning of my involvement or commitment to her learning.  The National Education Association and The National Parent-Teacher Association both do not endorse homework for kindergartners so I’ll have that to back me up if necessary.  I’m also fully prepared to say that the new dog ate my homework. That still works, right?






34 thoughts on “The Dog Ate Our Homework”

  1. Haha brilliant!

    I completely agree, education is not contained to school. My dad used to walk me through the grocery store working on my times tables when I was in first grade.

    That said, when a teacher sent me home one summer with a note saying ‘The class didn’t get through chapters 7, 12, and 18-23. Please review the material with your child’ he was less than enthusiastic.

  2. This is one of the things I am dreading as my eldest starts school in Sept (she’s an Aug baby!). Its remembering to do it, having the time and I’ve been told a lot of the homework is up to the parents!! I’m like you…playing, chatting, TV and food will be what I’m interested in after school xx #thatfridaylinky

  3. Haha that ‘excuse’ will never grown old. I hear why you’re saying though, at 5 (of not older) they’re so young and to my mind hey should be playing and enjoying themselves without the worry of homework – let’s face it they will have plenty of that in years to come. So I’m with you, build train tracks, watch sponge bob and listen to gangsta rap haha ok maybe not that… thanks for sharing at #familyfun

  4. Of course the dog can eat the homework, mine just ate through our fly screens! Our primary school sends readers home with young children and the older children are supposed to read whatever they want as long as the acred something, plus do some time tables practice. Other than that they don’t get homework as long as they get through their school work at school, which mine do so after school it is pretty relaxed. #familyfun

  5. My sons homework the other day was to talk about 4 books of his choice and discuss whether they were fiction or non fiction. He is 7 and there was no talking him out of his belief that Harry Potter is totally real and not at all made up! Merry Christmas. Thanks for linking up to #FridayFrolics. Hope you’ll be linking again in 2017

    1. They seem to expect more than I do, and I thought I was pretty gung ho. I guess I’d rather have that than the alternative!

  6. Absolutely agree! Purposeful play is just so important. I really disagree with a great deal of the U.K curriculum, I think we have to take more inspiration from Scandinavian countries, less homework and more free play. #stayclassymama

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