Monday, April 14, 2008

Really, It's Okay -- Leave My Children Behind...

Enough with the fucking homework, grade school teachers, okay?! Jeez-ass! Look, I get it -- by sending work home, you're showing us skeptical parents that you're crackin' the ol' whip and really learnin' the spawnage some fancy knowledge. But spread it the fuck out a little, will ya? Holy duckballs, it's like a fucking Stanley Kaplan review session every night, here at the Crabshack.

Miss O's workload, I can handle. One math worksheet a week, maybe the odd drawing, some spelling words and even an occasional project. Fine. Mr. Z's teacher, however, is some kinda homework-hitler. The boy's got a coupla paragraphs for spelling due on Friday, a Social Studies test on Friday, a fucking Science project about magnets and motors and shit due... ON FRIDAY, and he's gotta write, create and perfect a puppet-show-book-report to be performed next Wednesday. I don't think I did that much work in a month... in college!

Granted, the science project was apparently assigned before Spring Break, but it somehow slipped Mr. Z's mind, so instead of casually assembling the thing over a leisurely two-week period, we've basically got to slap together some sort of nuclear fission accelerator in the next three fucking days. And the assignment sheet was completely vague -- make something with magnets or a motor or circuits or lights that illustrates the concepts they've been studying in class.

ME: So, what have you been learning about these things in class, Mr. Z?

MR. Z: Uh... I'm not sure.

Perfect. Then let's connect a bunch of circuits to a giant electromagnetic motor that illuminates a bunch of little lights that spells out, "I'm Not Sure." And then I'll help you take it into class on Friday, where I'll carefully set it on your teacher's desk and then proceed to drop my pants and take a steaming dump on it. Whattya say?!

And of course I won't allow him to do anything half-assed (see past project 1 and past project 2). So, we've decided to create something simple -- a working, mini-model of a MAGLEV train. And yes, I am insane, thank you very much.

ME: Hey Mr. Z! I have an idea -- let's make a working model of a LEVITATING MAGNETIC TRAIN!

MR. Z: Cool! How do we do that?


All I know is that, instead of a leisurely breakfast, a big mug-o-coffee and the New York Times tomorrow morning, I'll be shuffling up and down the aisles of Hobby Lobby looking for shitloads of magnets, some foam core, a coupla boards and some plexiglass, to recreate in three days what it probably took the Chinese five years and over a billion dollars to complete. Should be no problem.

Of course, if we fail miserably, there's always the magnetic levitation Plan B...


Burbanmom said...

Too funny! I am SO GLAD my kids aren't at the homework stage yet! I'm horrible at those damn science projects!

Sarah said...

THis is way better than my science project... "Know the sanitation system of Oak Park, IL"... thought up by my dad. Yes, he sent me to tour the poop management center and then draw a schematic. Not OUR finest hour. ha ha. But, at least I didn't hatch chicks like my next door neighbor and then have the parents freaking out when the cat killed them all.

p. riddy said...

Woah. I got some catching up to do.


You haven't seen the last of me.

Monica said...

The Twelve Steps of Homework -or- Homework for Dummies
1. We admitted we were powerless over homework—that our lives had become unmanageable.
2. Came to believe that a Power Tool greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity.
3. Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of Mod Podge as we understand It.
4. Made a searching and fearless inventory of our shelves and junk drawers.
5. Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being the exact nature of our limits as parents. The boundaries, notsomuch.
6. Were entirely ready to have God remove all these defects of character and replace them with manual dexterity and intellectual intrigue.
7. Humbly asked Him to remove our shortcomings - mainly the one where we don't know where to draw the line.
8. Made a list of all persons we had harmed with a hot melt glue gun, and became willing to make amends to them all, and also unglue them.
9. Made direct amends to such people wherever possible, except when to do so would injure them or others or a brand new piece of foam core.
10. Continued to take personal inventory and when we were wrong promptly admitted it, and at 3 am, begin the project anew, with vigor.
11. Sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact paper with the God of Adhesives as we understood Him, paying only for knowledge of His Will for us and the power to carry that out - in 3D with moving parts.
12. Having had a spiritual awakening as the result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to all parents of project prone children, and to practice these principles in all our affairs. And sometimes within the marriage itself.
Says she who defied Joyce Kilmer, and for one school project, MADE A TREE. FOr the curious and equally sick, there were 687 INDIVIDUAL leaves on said tree.

Innisanimate said...

I love plan B. I did a nice spit take all over my nice 22" monitor.

But Make magazine probably has some sort of homemade maglev kit somewhere on its website...

lizzy said...

Loved the post.

On an unrelated note, please watch this. It will make living in Okemos seem like a refuge:

sarah aswell said...

(hey, i found your blog from grinnellbloggers)

i have to wonder if ever, in the history of mankind, a child has ever completed a science project by themselves. are science projects all just some private joke teachers have with each others - they sit in the teacher lounge and laugh at the idea of all of the parents up all night dicking with magnets?

Jasper Mockingbard said...

science projects are not teachers' jokes, usually. our school is required to have 10 represent our school in the district science fair. i graded some today. they were pathetic. it was clear that 99% of these kids slapped something together without any supervision at all. hell, most of the kids didn't have all the required components. i guess their parents didn't give a shit. there were 25 5th grade projects; there are 85 students. is there something wrong here?