It could be homework, an assignment, or a project. Not only from school but home as well, children need help from their parents, adults and people in the community as a whole in their academics in order to excel. Kids are becoming successful and make progress if they are being assisted in their academics.

In the community I stay in, parents and adults are easily frustrated when their children ask for help with their school work. Others become aggressive towards their children, and others are ignorant and are always giving excuses. I don’t blame other parents because they come from work tired. But let us look at Nathi’s story below:

It was night. Nathi was holding his grade 7 Natural Science textbook when he approached his aunt.

“Aunty, Mr Mbuyazi gave us this home-” he didn’t finish, when his mother responded aggressively back.

Yhu hayi Nathi! It’s you again with this bloody homework of yours. Ndidiniwe mna, I am exhausted. I just came from work and the cooking is still waiting for me. Can’t you ask your uncle or Zanele to help you?” his mom replied.

Zanele was his older sister. With sadness and disappointment written in his face, Nathi went straight to his uncle’s bedroom. He knocked, but there was no answer. He got in and found his uncle lying in bed looking as if he was in deep sleep. The snoring explained everything.

He must have been drinking as always, Nathi thought to himself. As Nathi tried to wake him up, he caught a whiff of a stale beer on his breath.

“Malume? Uncle?” he tried by all means to wake him, but uncle was not waking up.

Although Lwazi didn’t want to, he figured he had no choice but to give up on his uncle.

Nathi’s last option was his older sister, Zanele. As always, Zanele was watching TV in the sitting room, watching her favourite TV show, Idols SA. Nathi knew how much Zanele loved Idols. He knew she would even sacrifice other things because of it. He knew Zanele would never help him, so he decided not to bother her. That was it; he was not completing his homework.

“I will not dare go to school tomorrow,” he told himself. He knew the punishment he would get for not doing or completing his homework.

Coming from work tired is not a clear excuse because a few minutes with your child won’t hurt. That 30 minutes you spend watching Generations could be spent on helping your child with their homework. The little time you spend helping your child will make a huge difference. He/she will obviously learn something new. Parents who are not available or don’t have time could still ask their family members or people in the community.

Again, there are those parents and adults whom when helping their children, give them everything. Everything is done by them and children will go play outside. It is very dangerous to spoon-feed a child as they lack learning. Parents should make means of engaging their children to learn and their learning becomes successful by:

1. Doing a weekly schedule with them. Setting a regular study time that will also include breaks – children should be taught and be able to differentiate between study-time and play-time.

2. Making them think for themselves when they assist them. That is better than spoon-feeding them.

3. Not waiting for children to seek help but taking an initiative and find out if children have homework.

4. Approaching people in the community to assist their children if they are not available or don’t know the work.


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