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Coping with homework

Published Date: 27 Apr 2023

Kenzie is now in school full time, and although he's only four, he has homework and reading to complete. This can sometimes be challenging for us as Kenzie is always really tired after a day in school.

What I have to keep reminding myself is how much harder Kenzie has to work in school compared to others. He has to work really hard to focus on the teacher and not let background noise distract him. In a noisy environment with lots of different sounds going on all at once, he has to work ten times harder to focus and concentrate, and this must be so incredibly tiring for him.

So it's really difficult getting him to complete any homework or activities when he gets home after a day in school. I try to keep any homework tasks to the weekends so we have more time to spend on it together. I also always try and make things fun and interactive, turning things into games and playing rather than ‘work’.

If you have followed our journey from the beginning and watched videos on our Facebook page, you’ll know how Kenzie and I spend all of our time playing and exploring new things. I’m a big believer in making learning fun and that you can learn so much more when you’re enjoying what you’re doing.

Even when Kenzie was really little and even before he had his implants, I used games to help teach him colours, animals, transport etc. He learnt sign language and speech all through different games such as hide-and-seek and ‘spot the difference’, and as a result he was able to use sign language from a really young age.

Although the content and level of his learning has now changed, I still try to make it as fun as possible. To help him practise his writing and numbers I have bought lots of different activity books and games, and we play them together. He enjoys taking it in turns: he gets to write or spell a word and then I have my turn. This way he sees it as playing rather than ’work’.

With counting numbers, I will still use his toys like cars and animals, and we will play games and count how many red cars or how many sheep there are etc. I naturally fit this into any game we’re playing so he’s counting without even realising.

I think reading is really important, and we always read a story every night before bed. This was a lot easier when he used to bring story books home from school as we'd just use these for our bedtime stories. But now he has actual reading books as well where he has to sound the letters and read the words. He sees this as ‘work’, so it's a lot harder to get him to enjoy it.

To help with this, we try to do it at the same time each day as part of our routine: after dinner and before quiet time so he’s still awake enough to concentrate. I also give huge amounts of praise when he gets letters or words right, as he always loves it when he has achieved something himself and loves being praised for good work.

We still also read our bedtime story, and now he gets to have one from school and also pick one from his own collection. When reading, we always make it fun and interactive, and Kenzie loves it when we put on funny voices for different characters.

Kenzie also loves books where he can get involved, such as pop-ups or opening doors within the book, as he always learns best by having a go himself.

I don't know how easy this will be as he gets older and playing games with mummy is no longer ‘cool’, but we will cross that bridge when we come to it. For now, I’m making the most of enjoying time with my gorgeous little four-year-old.

We have lots of videos and tips on games etc on our Facebook page if you’re looking for more inspiration.


Becky is mum to Mackenzie (5), who is profoundly deaf. Mackenzie was fitted with cochlear implants in January 2020. Becky also blogs about family life, you can find her at @youdontneedtohear on Facebook.