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By GreatSchools Staff
A single mother of an 8-year-old boy writes, "It is absolutely imperative that both parents spend regular time with the child when possible. Otherwise, it will affect the child's sense of worth and value. So, it is up to me to be cooperative and supportive of any effort his dad makes toward seeing his son. I set aside my issues about our break-up and divorce in order to encourage my son's need to spend time with his dad.
"My son sees his dad every Sunday afternoon for an overnight. His dad takes him to school or daycare on Monday. He also sees his dad Wednesday after school. My son needs time to readjust to our home, so I've asked his dad to return him around 7:00 on Wednesday. The schedule flexes around his dad's work and motorcycling schedule."
A remarried mother of four writes: "One thing we found is that the schedule is very important. Dividing the week makes homework hard to track. In my husband's case, he and his ex-wife have moved to a week-on, week-off schedule with their son and have been able to keep on top of school work by means of communication with the teacher. He is in sixth grade and his teacher emails all three of us where he is with his homework each week. It isn't perfect, but it helps.
"Personally, I feel that at 12- or 13-years-old he should be able to keep track of his own homework, but his parents split up in first grade and he has learned that denial and procrastination really work well since he is moving from house to house. If you can avoid creating a habit like this I would definitely suggest it. Let your child know that homework is a priority to both of you by staying on top of it.
"In my case, my ex-husband is more interested in having a good time than encouraging homework. I have the children during the school week and my ex-husband has them every Friday after school until Saturday morning, alternating with Friday after school until Sunday evening. This has worked fine until this year (my oldest is also in sixth grade) when his homework load increased. My son is responsible for his homework over the weekends at his dad's, but we keep in mind during the week if he will be gone over the weekend and quite often try to get it done before then. I have to say there have been quite a few times when he comes home at 6 p.m. on a Sunday night and cranks on homework for Monday morning.
"My suggestions are:
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