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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:03 pm 
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When my boys start next September, their days will be longer and they will have more homework of course. Despite my long standing dislike of children having loads of out of school activities, we do have three evenings per week when we are busy for three hours. Now, how has everyone else coped with this? I am not a fan of homework in the car as a regular activity, so do other parents find that most homework has a week or so to be done and with three nights if not much, they can catch up on there other days (obviously it depends is the answer, but just in general), or did you find that DCs just had to let something go? They'd be so sorry to see any of the activities go, we have a keen gymnast, which is so good for him, and both do a different professional music commitment too, which they love. I suppose I just have to be led by how they cope? But just wondering a bout others experiences.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:15 pm 
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My lot would definitely have been too tired for that level of out of school activity in year 7; but I am sure others will have different experiences. We have never done a vast amount of evening activities but we got it down to one evening per child by then, not deliberately, but it worked here. Remember there may be late activities at school too and once you have a child finishing school at 430 and having to eat and get out again it does present certain challenges. Even now most of our extra-curricular stuff happens at weekends, with Scouting and voluntary work being the only things which consistently takes them out after school.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:25 pm 
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Am preparing DS for the fact that he'll have to give up his Tuesday evening swimming group (which he loves) :( But his judo group has a later session which all yr 7s and above can attend if they want, and I've even put his name down for scouts!! This is because he won't be going to secondary with most of his local friends (especially his oldest and best-est) and I thought it would be a good way to keep in touch regularly and have some fun. And the pack meet on a Friday evening, which is perfect :)

But I guess its going to be a case of suck-it-and-see! Who knows how tired they'll be and how much extra they'll want to do???

JD


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:27 pm 
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Amber wrote:
My lot would definitely have been too tired for that level of out of school activity in year 7; but I am sure others will have different experiences. We have never done a vast amount of evening activities but we got it down to one evening per child by then, not deliberately, but it worked here. Remember there may be late activities at school too and once you have a child finishing school at 430 and having to eat and get out again it does present certain challenges. Even now most of our extra-curricular stuff happens at weekends, with Scouting and voluntary work being the only things which consistently takes them out after school.


Ditto here, I used to spend my evenings dashing around like a mad thing, but it has fallen off a lot now they are all senior school. Mine are busy at the weeknds though, which doesn't make weekends away very easy.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:28 pm 
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Will post again later but we are struggling - not helped by the fact that I don't drive.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:35 pm 
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I cans see some difficult choices may have to be made. I'm such a fan of children having time to just relax and chill out at home i cannot see how this level of activity can be sustained.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 1:44 pm 
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My oldest is now in Y8 and his younger brother will be starting Y7 in Sept. In the first year, he got about an hour of homework a night - some nights it was less, however, and there was a strict homework timetable that the teachers all kept to. Mainly because of the timetable, (ie, not having the lesson the next day) it was pretty rare that they had to complete something overnight so there is often a couple of days grace (meaning stuff could be done at the weekend, for example). There is lots of tests for languages - so vocab is constantly being revised but that is quite a good car thing to do. The amount of homework seems to have dropped off a bit in Y8 but the pieces do tend to be longer now (eg more project based). My oldest does rugby training after school one night a week and sport on Sat and Sun mornings. My point is, you will probably have to make some choices about after school stuff but it may not be as drastic as you think, as long as your son is prepared to give up some of his weekend free time. We have tried to help our oldest keep his weekends free for himself by encouraging him to get into the swing of completing homework in the week - suspect the second son will be a different kettle of fish as he is a bit of a last minute.com!!


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 2:37 pm 
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There are points in the summer when my boys have up to 4 evenings out a week due to trying to finish the football season and the beginning of cricket. I have no idea how we manage but we just do. Both have learnt to complete homework as soon as they get in and not to leave it to the last minute. However with my eldest taking GCSE's this year this can't happen but to manage this we have just been very organised.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 2:40 pm 
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Location: Essex
Unless an activity is logistically totally impossible, I would definitely start off with the intention of continuing out of school activities that your DC like doing. Would you be considering giving things up if they were going to your catchment comp / upper school, or does the question only arise because they are going to a more distant / more academically demanding school? If they have any ambivalence about the choice of school, don't give them an automatic reason to resent it :(.

It may be that something 'dies a death' naturally after a while, but as you can see. I am also an advocate the 'suck it and see' approach.


Our year 8 and year 12 DC currently each do swim squad, Scouts and drama groups and DD (yr8) also does Nature Club, Hockey, Harry Potter club and Latin during lunchtime and cricket one evening a week.

And they nearly always manage to get all their homework done on time :D

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Outside of a dog, a book is a man's best friend. Inside of a dog it's too dark to read.Groucho Marx


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 4:14 pm 
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I would fully endorse Toadmum and others' approach of biding your time to see how it goes. We kept up three after-school activities for DS (sport and music); now in year 10 he's still doing two of them, has dropped one and added another, and does after-school and Saturday sport. If you add in his lunchtime clubs he's actually doing far more than he did in year 6 but has learned to juggle his time better to fit in homework and the occasional (!) shower.

DD has just started year 7 and although she has dropped swimming, as she finished last term able to swim a distance I thought was perfectly far enough, she has so far kept up three nights and two Saturday classes of dancing, plus an instrumental lesson and seems to manage fine. For both children it provides an opportunity to keep up with friends they would otherwise no longer see as they are at different schools.

The crucial thing for us though is that all of these activities are within close walking distance or a very short drive (hooray for suburban living!) so they/I don't waste much time travelling.

Both children also seem to find plenty of time for relaxing/TV/texting/reading/gaming/annoying each other although our bedtimes have slipped a bit.


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