Since my previous post, my son has started getting daily homework, and we are gradually settling into it. He did lose his temper with me today when I told him it was homework time... 5pm is our routine time for doing it--the children have had plenty of time to play together, and I'm pottering about the kitchen, tidying up and starting to get dinner ready. By this time, the novelty's worn off, so even though I gave him plenty of warning that 5pm was coming, he did not want to do it.
At one point, I told him that it was my job to make sure he did his homework, and he told me it was his. I think he was just negating what I said without really thinking about it, but it did give me a moment's pause. After all, I do want to get him into good, *independent* habits. Yet at the same time, we've only just started this, so it's not a habit yet. And it's as important that he have a time to do it that suits all of us as it is for him to take initiative. e.g., he can't decide to do his homework five minutes before dinner, or when I'm doing something with his sister.
Fortunately, once we actually start doing the homework, there's no problem. So far, it only takes him about ten minutes to do homework (sometimes getting him to clear his work off the kitchen table so we can serve dinner takes longer than the actual homework), and it's worked out quite well. I was concerned about my daughter being a distraction, but she has been fine playing or reading by herself, and doesn't seem one whit bothered that her brother's doing something she can't do. This could all change, but for now, all is going well.
One week down, thirteen years to go!