The 10 School Projects Parents Hate Most

The 10 School Projects Parents Hate Most

Were school projects invented to teach kids or drive parents mad?

By: Maria Mora

Every parent’s worst nightmare comes in the form of a handout that arrives via backpack. Suddenly, a perfectly lovely afternoon is ruined by the dreaded school project. Inevitably full of oddly detailed instructions and expectations, these projects always end up causing parents stress. We asked parents and here are the 10 kinds of school projects they hate the most.

1. The science fair. “With most science fair projects, my children are gung ho about doing the experiment. But their interest wanes when they have to type up the results for the science fair display board.”

2. The diorama. “We spent $70 at the craft store creating a diorama of an aquarium. Guess who had to operate the hot glue gun for two hours.”

3. The biology model. “We had to make a model of a living cell and it had to be fully edible. Didn't know about it until two days before. Most kids baked cakes and used decorations to signify the different parts of the cell. My son didn't want to be that easy. He wanted to make his out of fruit.”

4. The board game. “My kid has to make a board game that uses electricity and magnets. It's horrible. We are in the middle of it now and it's all dependent on me. What kid knows how to make an electric board game?”

5. The reading log . “Reading logs have to count. I have spent too many hours begging my rule-obeying child to just guess which pages he read on which nights.”

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6. The fundraiser. “ Every year I have to convince the same relatives that it’s a good idea to spend a lot of money on cookie dough, pretzels, and cookware. The kids feel so competitive about it, too. ”

7. The report. “My kindergartner was asked to report on their summer vacation: Do a report on a place you visited, write a narrative about your summer vacation, and write a poem about it. Plus, create a visual aid and present your report to the class. Kindergarten. First month of school.”


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8. The foreign language project. “While my kid is going through French immersion, his parents don’t speak a word. So while my son is melting into a puddle, I was trying desperately to remember any French at all. Of course, the last time I had French class was very close to 30 years ago!”

9. The family tree. "Son, I am not able to [Internet search] this, we seem to have a situation where I'm going to have to call people. Does your teacher enjoy torturing me?" 

10. The memorization. “Every child in my daughter’s class had to choose a poem to memorize and recite. My daughter picked one nearly two pages long. We were both near tears practicing it night after night.”

What school project do you dread the most?

Maria Mora is a single mom, editor, and hockey fanatic. She lives with her two sons in Florida.

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