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Teacher's assistant at your service

August 28, 2013 - Pam Rodgers

My mother is a teacher, and she loves her job.

If she didn’t, I have a feeling she wouldn't still be teaching after almost 40 years in the business.

Mom is someone I consider to be the “Queen of Homework.” She gives so many assignments that her desk is constantly full of papers to grade. But despite the amount of assignments she doles out in a week, her students love her. Hence her title of queen.

Well, a queen can only handle so many papers. Luckily she has been blessed with two daughters who were able to help her check papers since we were old enough to be trusted with such a task.

Maybe this is why I chose a different path. Hmm, something to consider. On the other hand, my sister became a high school math teacher so I guess it had the opposite effect on her.

Anyway, allow me to lay down a little background for you, mom started at the elementary level, teaching fifth and sixth graders. Most of these assignments were multiple choice so Trish and I were able to field these tasks at a younger age than you might think.

Mom moved to junior high level math and reading when I was in eighth grade. She had more students, which meant more assignments. Trish and I were more mature at this time and could be trusted with more complicated tasks.

Eventually she made the switch to just mathematics at the junior high and high school level, which she currently teaches today. Math teachers equals a ton of daily work, quizzes and tests. Trish and I loyally helped mom grade until our graduation. We even got credit for it our senior year for being “official” teacher’s aides, a fact our brother still shakes his head at. Since our high school days ended, we have both checked a test here and there but mom no longer needed as much help.

Because she is so loved by her subjects ... I mean students, she has been able to enlist more teacher’s aides in the past few years to help stay ahead of the daily work. This year however, she only has one. With the lack of students-in-waiting, the queen has had to bring an old favorite out of retirement.

That’s right. It’s me.

I love my mother, but I’ve been telling her for years to tone down the homework. It has failed to sink in because she has about the same amount as always. Having one-to-one computers hasn’t really affected the amount because written assignments are the best way to be sure her students understand the mathematical processes. Who am I to tell the queen how to run her classroom?

After about the third stack of assignments, I was back in the grove like I hadn’t taken my, gulp, eight year hiatus. Despite some complaining here and there, I love to help out my mom. It allows her to relax and not have to work so hard after school to get her grades done.

Now I can make believe that I’m a teacher again, except I don’t have to deal with the tween and teenage students. It’s a pretty sweet gig actually.



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