A) Yes. B) Yes.
Are you sitting comfortably? Pen poised? …Then please answer these simple questions. 1) What is a ‘fronted adverbial”? 2) Define a ‘gerund’? 3) Calculate the kinetic energy of a 2,000 tonne car travelling at 30 km an hour.
So, how are you going so far? Complete fail? Is your brain broiling?… Are you tempted to impale yourself on your pen? Well, you’re not alone. Bewildered by modern syllabuses and new teaching techniques, parents are paying up to $100 an hour for private coaching just so they can help with their children’s homework.
Private tutoring of kids has become so widespread that ambitious parents are trying to get an advantage by hiring tutors for themselves, so they can fully understand the homework of their precious progeny.
A company called Tutor House has set up the service after conducting a survey of 2,500 parents which found that more than two thirds feared that their ignorance was handicapping their children’s education.
Over a fifth of the parents surveyed, revealed that they regularly helped with homework, with mums more involved than dads. More than two thirds of the parents surveyed said they didn’t understand new teaching methods and all struggled with new terminology. And who wouldn’t be linguistically lost amid the verbiage of ‘omniscient narrators’ , ‘quadratic sequences’ and ‘fronted adverbials”.
As if being a parent isn’t stressful anxiety. Booking Suzuki lessons, balancing meals, creating hygienic toilet environments, buying educational Lego , plastic free toys and eco-friendly reusable nappies, supervising digital de-toxes, discouraging tattoos, side-boobs, piercings and thinking that the Kardashians are role models, instead of what they are – models without roles…. Yep, parental anxieties tend to just pile up on top of each other, like a Chinese acrobatic group. And now I have to add tutoring to an already over-booked schedule?
And when exactly would I make the time? A parent’s “day off” , i.e., Saturday, is one exhausting ricochet as you chauffeur kids to and from various birthday parties, Ten Pin Bowling and Rock Climbing, and at absolute opposite ends of the city; squeezing in football practise, hair cuts, dance classes, tennis lessons and the weekly supermarket shop on route.
Your other “day off”, Sunday, is reserved for clearing up the house which your kids have left looking like a pigsty…Except, glancing around, you realise that no self-respecting pig would set trotter in here! No matter how I try, my house never looks like the model home photographed in parenting magazines. It looks more like an SAS training ground. And what mother can settle down with a tutor when, judging by the peculiar odour emanating from under the couch, a surfeit of skunks have obviously gone there to die?
Mind you, if I did have a tutor, the one burning question I would have for him or her is this – when did parenting get so hard? I’m already confused about what kind of parent I’m supposed to be. Am I a Helicopter parent? A Snowplough parent? Or a Tiger mother?
Tiger mothers are so prevalent; it’s now not unusual for parents to send CV’S to nursery schools for their two year olds. Two! Even worse, a report entitled “More than A Job’s Worth: making careers education age-appropriate” says that children as young as three should be introduced to careers education with the aim of broadening horizons.
Yet more to feel inadequate and anxious about. “Here is your rattle darling and a rusk, and a stethoscope because I feel a surgical vocation don’t you? Building blocks? Yes, but only if you also leaf through this book of architectural designs.”
If this pressure keeps up, the highlight of a parent’s day will be inhaling their kid’s homework glue. What today’s parents desperately need are lessons in how to chill out about parenting. Let me tutor you on how to forget about being perfect and learn to be more laid back. First, pour yourself a big cocktail. Secondly, go and sit in the garden. Now, put on your headphones so you can’t hear your kids’ demands. Next, pop your feet up and dive into some “continuous prose”, otherwise known as a novel and then….RELAX.
Ah, well done. Go to the top of the class.
Please do share your most angst-ridden or hilarious parenting moments.
What do women really want in bed? Breakfast. Oh, and a good book. If you’re looking for a funny, frivolous yet feisty new read, do slip between my covers. Satisfaction guaranteed.
Here’s a selection of scribblings in which I peel down to my emotional underwear – a psychological striptease that occasionally reveals all.
I think women are each other’s human Wonderbras – uplifting, supportive and making each other look bigger and better.
If he wants breakfast, tell him to sleep in the kitchen.
Men think monogamy is something you make dining tables out of.
Many marriages break up for religious reasons – he thinks he’s a god and she doesn’t.
Love prepares you for marriage the way needlepoint prepares you for round-the-world solo yachting.
Boys will be boys, and so will a load of middle-aged boys who should know better.
Ladies who lynch.
No wife ever shot a husband while he was vacuuming.
I think therefore I’m divorced.
All husbands think they’re Gods. If only their wives weren’t atheists.
Happy wife = happy life.
I couldn’t ask for a better husband… as much as I’d bloody well like to.
Statistically, 100% of divorces begin with marriage.
Marriage is nature’s way of promoting masturbation.
Marriage is a fun-packed, frivolous activity – only occasionally resulting in death.
It’ll be an amicable split. You’ll both get 50 % of the acrimony.
A new invention is required. The monogamous husband. Patent Pending.
How Do I Hate Thee? Let me Count the Ways.
My wedding vows didn’t say To Love, Hoover and Obey.
I’m Having my period so can therefore legally kill you.
You are going to enjoy this marriage, even if I have to divorce you to do so.
A happy marriage is like an orgasm – many of them are faked.
All this emphasis on women faking orgasms, but what about men faking foreplay?
Why do men like intelligent women? Because opposites attract.
Why don’t women tell jokes? Because we marry them.
What does a woman really want in bed? Breakfast.
For women, life is full of lies – I mean doctors maintain that wrinkles don’t hurt.
Legal aid cuts prove that the Tories believe a person is innocent until proven destitute.
Sexist men are so stupid it makes you want to take the ‘men’ out of Mensa.
If a man ever tells you that women fall at his feet – it’s only because he gets them drunk first.
A woman must always fight back. Never just lie back and think of Canberra.
The best cure for menopause is the toy boy diet. A case of having Your Beefcake and Eating It Too.
I don’t fake orgasms. I’m faking being six foot one and seven stone.
Trophy wives tarnish quickly and then get left on the shelf.
Lawyers work 24/7. The partners of lawyers suffer from a bad case of subpoena envy.
Most shrinks should book an appointment with themselves.
The question on the minds of most women is – why doesn’t chocolate go straight to your boobs?
Don’t fall for a man’s puppy dog look… Just get him wormed.
It’s been so long since a man has touched me, not even medical science will want my body.
My top tip for keeping your youth? Lock him in the pool house.