For Cryin’ out Loud, Parents, Let Kids Do Their Own School Work

We’re blessed to live in a nation where abundant educational opportunities exist. We are also blessed that we are free to choose what type of education best suits our families, be it private school, charter school, public school or homeschooling.

Life itself is an education, especially if parents allow their children to learn from it. After I wrote that sentence, I realized it was quite subjective in that every parent might interpret it differently. What one parent sees as a teachable moment might not be the same for another.

There’s lots of room on our planet for creativity and uniqueness. Since the purpose of education (from a Christian perspective) is to learn what we need to learn to know, love and serve God to the best of our abilities and reach our full potentials as His children on earth, the way that plays out for each individual varies.

As a homeschooling mother, I have much flexibility to design curriculum, activities and educational experiences that best align with my children’s individual needs, strengths and goals, as well as whatever suits our current state in life, as a family. Although, lesson plans may change throughout the years, one thing remains constant: My children are taught to do their own work.

In “outside school” settings, I have noticed a trend in recent years that not only boggles my mind, it makes me feel rather sad. Parents who think — well, I’m not sure exactly what they think, but I assume they think they are helping their kids by doing their children’s schoolwork for them. More and more often, as I stand on the sidelines at sporting events or community gatherings with other parents, I hear mothers and fathers saying things like, “My son had such a hard time with that essay, I ended up having to write it for him” or “I pretty much do all my daughter’s math homework.” On one occasion that astounded me (and my kids, who were nearby) a mother showed me a photograph on her cellphone of a beautiful, elaborate cake in the shape of something I can’t recall, and proceeded to tell me that she had made it for her son’s school project, for which he received an “A.” I asked her to clarify since I didn’t know for sure if perhaps parents had been encouraged to help with the project. Sure enough, the boy (who was in high school) was supposed to have done all the work himself; yet, his mother not only did it, she boasted about the grade her son had “earned” for the project.

I’m sorry, but these parents are not helping their kids, their crippling them for life (okay, I took part of that last line from one of my favorite movies, “Remember the Titans” but the point stands) — it’s time parents ask themselves if their children are truly being educated when they never have to work, never have to fail, never have to learn from their own mistakes — all because their moms and dads are doing everything for them while they themselves receive accolades for things they’ve never done.

Not cool.


Writer Bio

Judy DudichJudy Dudich resides in the beautiful woods of Pennsylvania, where 24 acres of land and a home-office provide the perfect setting for her children’s home-education and her own homesteading and business ventures. Life is full of blessings (and challenges!) for Judy, as a wife, mother of 10 and Grammy to six. She is a published author, whose book, “I Surrender/A Study Guide for Women” continues to encourage and support others in Christian family lifestyles throughout the world. Judy has also previously worked in the online speaking circuit. Her passion for permaculture, re-purposing, foraging and organic gardening fills her days with learning and adventure that she loves to share.

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