I feel like these days with the girls alone is where I grow as a parent. I’m no longer able to rely on my parter to get things done around the house, so it’s up to me. Sure, it’s frustrating to manage the girls while we prepare dinner and clean up afterward, but it’s very satisfying when we finish the job ‘on time’.
I still feel compelled to drive things and push the girls in a certain direction. Elder had the opportunity to take pre-algebra, two grade levels above where she is now. I signed her up, and I spent some time over the summer tutoring her in the 5th grade curriculum that she would be skipping. I should put ‘tutoring’ in quotes, as I’ve never been able to find a way to teach her math without getting into yelling or crying. If something is “too hard” and I try to break down concepts into first principles, she gets frustrated and shuts down, which triggers me, and so on and on.
It finally came to the point where she had no choice but to accept my help. It was a segment on fractions, and Missus was no help. Elder remembered the steps wrong and there was no way we could force that revelation.
But over the weeks since we’ve come to an understanding. She got an F in the pre-algebra class. The teacher let us know halfway through the grading period and we agreed to drop her to the 6th grade honors class. Which is still a bit tough for her. She got a zero on an assignment and I found out from the teacher that she can make up anything under a C for partial credit.
So she’s making it up. And she’s fighting me real hard on it. She’s forgotten to turn in her homework and thrown it out the next day, she’s thrown out the other paper we did make-up on because she couldn’t show her work. I’m not sure if she’s doing this intentionally or what’s going on, but she’s going to make up these assignments before she has any privileges.
Still, I feel like I’m being a good dad helping her this way.