Friday, October 10, 2008

Kumon, I bid thee adieu...

I'm really fed up of being the bad guy!
From the kids' point of view.
I want to have fun with the girls, not spend a good part of the 180 minutes that I get with them every evening asking them to "do this and that", or "NOT do this or that"!

The bad act from me starts soon after we get home and sit on the table to have their milk and snack. They longingly look at my neighbor's yard, which is a direct view from our dining room. My neighbor's daughter, M, and a couple of other new kids in the block are having fun playing in their swing or simply running around...while two little girls of this working mom are scurrying their snack down, and getting ready to start homework.

To ease my guilt, I can't help but wonder, "Didn't I just pick up T1 from her after-school care, where she spent close to 2 hours playing, even had some gymnastics lessons-which she LOVES!
Didn't I pick up T2 from the huge play-ground in her pre-school"?

Here's the problem - we have the whole thing reversed! Fun first, get home tired, THEN complete HW.

OK!! Here's our schedule -

5.00 - pick up kids and reach home
5.00-5.30 - quick wash-up, feed em a snack (start cooking dinner).
5.30-6.45 - Kumon and homework and music/keyboard practice.
6.45-7.30 - Dinner
7.30-8.00 - Brush, wash-up, read and get ready for bed.

As you can see, there is really no minute to spare. And most days, with the two of them goofing around and having fun (???) in between this schedule, bedtime ends up getting pushed to almost 8.30pm.
What difference will 30 minutes do, you ask?? It shows the next morning!! That's what. If they are in bed by 8.00, they are both well-rested and wake up by themselves or with little help. Else, it's a tough chore, esply with T2.

We're basically over-worked every single day and try as we may, there are hardly any real fun-family-moments! And did I add the cooking, cleaning, and a broken dishwasher that we haven't had the time to replace?

So What's gonna give?

Plan A: Kumon Reading!
Plan B: Kumon Math AND Reading!

As far as I know, NO Plan A has ever worked. So I'm not even going to try.

So, as of 15 minutes ago, Pup and I have agreed to stick to Plan B.
It's happening next week.
After tomorrow's Kumon Ceremony!
After she gets a Trophy each for Math and Reading.
For being ahead of her Grade Level.
For working SO DARN hard every single day, with complaints or without.
For putting on a bright happy face to make it less of a deal.
For talking to her mind (or brain as she says) and making it come around and cheer up when she's not willing to do Kumon.
For doing all of this because she blindly trusts us.

Freedom from Kumon!! Just saying it makes me feel de-stressed.
I think she deserves this freedom! We can do more fun things and still learn some math along the way.

And maybe she can even step out on a weekday to play with her our neighbor M.