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Expectations of an 8 yo?


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#1 chicken_bits

Posted 11 February 2020 - 12:40 PM

What are reasonable expectations of an 8 yo regarding self discipline around household tasks and homework?

E.g. Is it reasonable to expect a (just turned) 8 year old be able to say to themselves "Oh, I need to do my homework rather than watch TV" and do it without prompting by a parent? Is it reasonable to expect them to be able to complete their homework without being reminded/redirected to the task?

#2 Mose

Posted 11 February 2020 - 12:45 PM

I don't know about anyone else, but my 8 year old would have needed reminding to do homework before TV.  It was made easier by having a set time each week when this occurred, but he would still often ask "can I go on my iPad" and need to be reminded that it was homework time.

Once reminded to get starting he would sit down and do it.  In honesty, he didn't put a lot of effort in, but most of the time the homework was "busy work" rather than particularly valuable for him personally.  When he was given homework which actually required more thinking and work he did it, but the basic worksheets got minimal attention.  Which, in honesty, is more than I think they deserved, but I supported the school's homework program even though I personally disagree with it.

#3 Moukmouk

Posted 11 February 2020 - 12:58 PM

I wouldn't expect anything regarding self discipline and homework at 8. I would try and set up expected timetables around the afternoon, but still completely expect to have to remind them. As to being able to do the homework themselves, it depends what it is. DD was quite capable, DS not a chance. As to household tasks, at 8 it was put your dirty clothes in the hamper and dishes in the dishwasher.

#4 seayork2002

Posted 11 February 2020 - 01:18 PM

I will admit I don't expect that of my 12yo and no I am not saying what is right or wrong for others, we are trying to get our 12yo to start but at early stages yet

#5 xxyzed

Posted 11 February 2020 - 01:19 PM

It depends on the child. My boys were not capable of self direction at that age. They are now teenagers and it depends on what the external motivator is. For example when we have the child lock on the tv and all electronic devices in the lock box the kids have been known to complete all homework, clean their rooms and do all other jobs without prompting before coming to me with the remote control or keyboard asking me to enter the unlock codes as they now know after many, many years of reminding that there is no electronics until all jobs are done.

#6 hills mum bec

Posted 11 February 2020 - 01:23 PM

I have an 8yo and she would not be self disciplined enough to do anything before turning on the TV.  Anything like homework or some kind of chore needs to be prompted by me with a bit of nagging thrown in.  She does follow a routine in the mornings before school without prompting.

#7 CrankyM

Posted 11 February 2020 - 01:46 PM

Um no not really. Most developmentally normal 8yr olds don’t have that capability. I’m pushing it to get my two at 9 and 11 to remember this without several reminders. I don’t expect that to change until they are 14-15.

#8 annodam

Posted 11 February 2020 - 02:14 PM

My kids are older than 8 now but when they were, both were capable of completing their Homework.  (I won’t say unassisted but definitely didn’t need prompting) but they were bringing Homework home from Prep, so by Yr 3 they were proficient.
I recall DD saying back in Yr 7 how the kids that came from Schools without a Homework policy struggled with the load & had very little time management skills.

#9 Lady Sybil Vimes

Posted 11 February 2020 - 02:21 PM

It would be an unreasonable expectation for my eight year old and I don’t think he’s alone in that. Very occasionally he might get out his homework and start without being asked but usually he needs prompting and some supervision.

Edited by Lady Sybil Vimes, 11 February 2020 - 02:21 PM.


#10 Popper

Posted 11 February 2020 - 02:32 PM

My 8 yo needs to be managed in regards to homework. No way would he pick up homework over TV unless we enforced restrictions on screen time until homework is complete.

#11 spr_maiden

Posted 11 February 2020 - 02:34 PM

At this point in the year, after no hw routine over long holidays? I would expect to be still prompting them.

With a set hw day, and further into the year when routine is more established - I'd expect 50/50 prompting/no prompting necessary.

#12 SeaPrincess

Posted 11 February 2020 - 03:21 PM

My 15yo still doesn’t do that, but my 12yo does, or has so far this year.

In terms of completing homework unaided/unprompted, my 3 children are all unpredictable when it comes to how well they apply themselves. Sometimes they also need help, so they like an adult to be available when they are working.

#13 TheGreenSheep

Posted 11 February 2020 - 03:45 PM

My then 8yo would have, he’s now a 10yo and will do it as the anxiety surrounding homework club and being kept in is huge for him. He would prefer to avoid it thanks very much!

His brother at 8 years old would never have torn himself away, I would’ve been reminding him for two hours before he did it. It was bloody exhausting. At 13 he is better at getting it done. Still requires a prompt to start though.

#14 BeAwesome

Posted 11 February 2020 - 03:47 PM

My eldest completely self managed her homework at 8, and I think she was in the minority.

My current 8 year old needs lots of prompting, bribing, threatening, and jostling along whilst doing it.  I'm not really a believer in busywork (or homework in general), but I'm going along with it, as it seems to be expected this year.

(Other than home readers, our school doesn't set much homework until Grade 3).

#15 CrankyM

Posted 11 February 2020 - 04:05 PM

I should say if it's something fun my 8yr old would do it before watching TV. He loves computer based homework for instance. He is completely jealous that his brother's class uses homework hound for instance. Studyladder was popular with him last year.

Our school barely does HW though. Reading for 20-30 mins is all that is expected and depending on the teacher, kids might get asked to work on areas they are struggling in at home. For instance my youngest is having some issues with maths, so we have been asked to practice that for 10-15 mins at home and been given some direction. I expect spelling words will come home soonish. But that is likely it.

#16 amdirel

Posted 11 February 2020 - 04:34 PM

Are they already watching tv and you're expecting them to think to turn it off? No chance!

Perhaps if you make it a blanket rule; absolutely no tv until after afternoon tea and homework is completed, then maybe after a while it might become habit. But then again they might just replace tv with playing with toys etc and they'll still need prompting anyway.

#17 Crombek

Posted 11 February 2020 - 04:55 PM

No way would my 8 year old self manage homework. I have to nag. And nag. And redirect. And refocus. And then we deal with the semi regular tantrums about how unfair the universe is to do this to him.

But then again I'm anti-homework for this age group. They need to be outside. They need space, fresh air and physical movement to allow processing of information and facilitate the encoding into long term memory.

#18 Riotproof

Posted 11 February 2020 - 05:31 PM

Last year I said to ds, it has to be done before Friday. I don’t mind when you do it, I’m happy to help if needed but I won’t be able to if you choose the last minute.  

He’s 10 now though. I would probably try to frame it as “which day do you want to do it?” We’ve got swimming this day, that on that day. Try and empower him with the choice instead of pushing your timetable on it.

#19 FuzzyChocolateToes

Posted 11 February 2020 - 07:25 PM

One of mine could have done it, but she's pretty exceptional! I wouldn't expect it though.

#20 MadMarchMasterchef

Posted 11 February 2020 - 07:29 PM

DD was fairly good with homework by that age but sometimes needed a bit of hand holding with stuff she finds hard.

#21 CallMeFeral

Posted 11 February 2020 - 07:39 PM

I don't know of an 8yo that would voluntarily think to turn off the TV and do homework. Hell my husband and I still struggle with that. All my kids still need regular reminding of what they need to do. DD is conscientious and will sometimes do homework unasked (age 11) but usually only thinks of it the morning it's due. And NONE of my children would think of it if the TV was on.

In terms of once they are doing it, depends on the 8yo. DD would mostly stick to task once she's started, at that age. DS would need redirection.

Edited by CallMeFeral, 11 February 2020 - 07:39 PM.


#22 lizzzard

Posted 11 February 2020 - 07:45 PM

DS is 11.5 and we were just commenting yesterday that since going back to school he seems to have grown up so much - the example DH gave was that he has just started doing his homework without prompting. So I think expecting that of an 8 yr old is pretty unreasonable.




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