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Why You Should Never Do Your Kids' Projects for Them
Why You Should Never Do Your Kids' Projects for Them

In order to teach your kids the value of hard work, you need to allow them to do things on their own, including homework and school projects. If you do assignments for them, all you are showing your kids is how inadequate they are.   

I have a story about that.

When I was in middle school, I was required to participate in a science fair. For one of the rare times in my life, I procrastinated. The night before the project was due, I went outside and gathered a bunch of crocus flowers from our yard, cut them apart, and attached them to a big poster board. It looked a little chaotic, but it was the best I could do as an 11-year-old starting a project the night before the due date.

That night, my dad came home, saw what I had made, and threw one of his angry fits at me. He was yelling, screaming, and scaring the crap out of me. He made me go outside and get some more plants. He told me to type the labels and demanded that everything had to be at right angles. I was up until God knows what time in the morning, crying continuously because he never stopped yelling. The end result looked very nice, of course, because an adult had made it.  

The next day at school, I put my poster on an easel, and a team of teachers came by to ask me to talk about my project. I stood there and stared like I was in a coma with my eyes open. I never said a word or even acknowledged my name. I just stood there. Do you know why? Because even at that age, I had integrity. I couldn’t describe the project because I didn’t do it. It wasn’t my project.

That night at home, the phone rang. It was one of my teachers asking to speak to my father. The phone call lasted a few minutes. When my dad hung up the phone, he said, “Laura, come here.” At this point, I didn’t really know what was going to happen. I didn’t realize a teacher would call the house. My dad said, “That was your teacher. They said you wouldn’t discuss your project.”

I silently sat there.

He asked, “Why?”, and I replied, “Because it wasn’t mine.”

That was it. He never again tried to interfere to make something perfect.

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Tags: Attitude, Behavior, Choose Wisely-Treat Kindly, Education, Parenting, Personal Responsibility, Values
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