For the first time ever I heard parents telling me that the reason their child does no work or sleeps in my class is because they don't understand what is going on. They claim it is hard for a child to stay focused when they are lost.
Luckily I had a copy of the last exam with me, quickly took it out and showed it to the parents. Although math might not be their specialty, they saw that the test primarily involved definitions and things that could easily be mastered with a little bit of studying. I then took out the homework sheet that summarized all these definitions, something their child did not bother to do and the make-up exam the child did not bother to show up for. The parental tone changed quickly.
I don't get it. I'm a mom. When a teacher told me my son did not do his homework, I never made excuses for him. And, he paid a hefty penalty for this missed work. (I'll write about that in an upcoming post.)