Bad Mum


27 September 2018


"Let me tell you about what I learnt at school today”, “Thank you for tidying my room" - and "Can I go to bed early tonight?'”, have topped a list of sentences British parents WISH they would hear from their children just once.

Researchers interviewed British parents with primary school-aged children and discovered as many as 88 percent feel at their wits end with the lack of communication from their offspring - with over a third of parents (34 percent) saying the sentence they would most like to hear their child utter is "Would you like to hear about what I learned at school today?"

"Can I go to bed early?", "Thank you for tidying my room", “Would you like to see how well I’ve done my homework?" - and "There's a letter in my bag you should probably read" - also made the top 10 on British parent's wish list. 

Further down the list were gems such as “This meal is delicious”, “Of course I don’t need to buy anything in this shop” and “Oh, you’re in the bathroom, I’ll just wait”.

But the survey revealed school is the main area that we would like our children to communicate with us more about - with only 19 percent of parents saying they have a complete picture of what their child gets up to during the day. 

In fact, 27 percent of those polled claimed it was like “getting blood out of a stone” when trying to prise information from their youngsters about what they have done during the day.

Sam Chaudhary, co-founder of ClassDojo who commissioned the poll explained that “today, we’re often more connected to things going on halfway across the world than to our children’s lives. Families say goodbye in the morning, and often don’t see each other again until dinner time. Half of our children’s life is out of the picture”.

The survey also revealed that if children were going to open up and chat, mum was the person they were most liable to talk to, according to 62 percent of 1,013 respondents, followed by dad at 16 percent and their friends (7 percent).

Seven out of ten people think that girls are much more likely to talk to their parents than boys, while just after school is the time where 38 percent of children are most likely to open up about their lives followed by one in four (26 percent) who talk just before bed.

However, not talking to mum and dad is not a new issue, as 72 percent of the parents polled said they only talked about “bits and pieces” of their life with their own parents when they were children and only one in ten say they went into great detail.

Regionally, Birmingham has the most open children in the UK with 28 percent of children telling their parents “everything” that happens after they’re picked up from school compared to a national average of 19 percent.

To help keep parents more easily connected with their children’s classroom ClassDojo has launched student-led digital Portfolios - a simple and fun way for parents to see the work their child is doing at school, right from their phone. Students can instantly share photos and videos of projects from class, make journal entries, create drawings, and share voice notes from any device. Once a teacher approves what the student posts it then gets shared with that child’s parents.

Mr Chaudhary added that “being able to easily share a project children are working on, or see a picture of a ‘magic moment’ from the class that parents otherwise would have missed brings everyone closer together. Compared to having a parent-teacher meeting once a term, this kind of frequent sharing a game-changer.

“The world is moving towards being closer and more connected. Sharing a moment from the classroom with the home can help bring families together after school. Children often aren’t sure how to respond to the ‘how was school today?’ question. Sharing on their ClassDojo Portfolios gives them and their families a simple, delightful way to share and chat more often, more lovingly and more openly.”

The 20 sentences parents WISH they would hear their child utter, just ONCE... 

1.     “The toys are all tidied away and put in the right boxes.” 35%

2.     “Let me tell you about what I learnt at school today.” 34%

3.     “Can I go to bed early tonight?'” 32%

4.     “Thank you for tidying my room” 32%

5.     “I’ve put all my clothes in the laundry basket” 30%

6.     “Would you like to see how well I’ve done my homework?” 28%

7.     “I’ve watched enough TV for one day” 28%

8.     “I’ve already packed my school bag for tomorrow” 27%

9.     “There’s a letter in my school bag you should probably read” 25%

10.  “I can see you’re on the phone, so I’m going to play quietly” 24%

11.  “I’ve done that thing you asked me to do.” 24%

12.  “Oh, you’re in the bathroom, I’ll just wait.” 23%

13.  “I really love family mealtimes.” 23%

14.  “How much is that? It’s too expensive.” 22%

15.  “This meal is delicious” 22%

16.  “Can I have an apple instead of ice cream?” 22%

17.  “I feel like I need to brush my teeth for longer” 21%

18.  “Of course I don’t need to buy anything in this shop.” 21%

19.  “There’s so much to do at home I can easily entertain myself” 18%

20.  “I can quietly entertain myself on this long car journey” 18%


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