Six year old girl needs to play!


I am having trouble balancing my 6 year old's responsibilities at home. She started school this year (prep) - the year before grade 1. She's at school from 8:30am - 3pm. By the time we arrive home, it is 3:30pm and I have a lot to squeeze in. Homework, chores, spending some quality time with the children and practicing her musical instrument, bath, dinner, sleep. She needs to be in bed by 7:30pm as a rule of thumb (my observations is that she gets very tired if bedtime is later than this). She complains she does not get enough time to play (I agree, she's only 6!) Do you have any guidelines as to what I can reasonable expect from a child this age in terms of balancing all these things? I have not been able to squeeze everything in every day successfully. I get so so much push back, whining, attitude and tears regarding everything she has to do. This makes me feel guilty as I am not sure if I am expecting too much of a little 6 year old.

In addition, I often have to help her with piano, spelling, reading and show-n-tell (once a week). I'd like to minimise my involvement but the school seems to put the responsibility on the parents to help our children with these things. I have a 3 year old as well - and millions of other chores, plus dinner to prepare for in the hours after school. I'd like to back off my involvement with her homework responsibilities, chores, piano practice etc a bit as I'm constantly standing around being a sentinel and making sure she's done all she has to (and reminding!!). How shall I do this so it is good for her?

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