When I was little--around your son's age. My grandmother would make all kinds of math problems for me, BIG numbers, and I'd add them or subtract them or whatever I was supposed to be learning at the time.
It taught me that the size of the number was not a barrier. I owned ALL numbers.
(it probably had something to do with me feeling that I could get a math minor in college)
And I loved words. So Grandma would have me look up all kinds of words in her 7 inch thick dictionary that sat on the stand in her family room. LONG words, difficult words, words beyond my parents normal words. It was fun. I owned all words now
--I was not afraid to figure them out, look them up, and use them. There are words I learned at the time that 40 years later, the adults I worked with, had never even heard, let alone understood them. They were too lazy to look them up or even admit they didn't understand the words.
So, I told my manager he was pusillanimous (a word I learned at a very young age). He was not offended, he had no idea what it meant.
Grandma gave me that dictionary, when I was in my late 30's. It sits here in my family room--it's one of my most prized possessions.
The point is--for me, from my experience, stretching your mind can open things up, for a lifetime of learning.
About the point of being assigned extra work (enrichment) to do at home (homework) by the schools and teachers. I raised 3 boys. I made plans for them every day. When the schools gave us 2 or 3 hours of homework or extra work (multiply that by 3 boys), it cut into me having the time to follow through on our family plans. Some parenting is more important than writing 6 book reports on their theme that week, and it annoyed me to no end. One kindergarten teacher sent home 6-12 pages of work to be done each night, it was ridiculous. It was like she was training paper pushers. Parents should support the teachers and schools as long as it doesn't take the whole 14 hours a day. Children have chores, they need play time, they need family time too.
School work should be done at school and it should not infringe on the rights of families. Parenting should be done at home. Now if you want to teach scholastics at home, more power to you, it's great stuff, very empowering.
I'm incredibly glad that my children are grown now. I'm tired of hearing how parents don't support teachers--I supported them with my volunteer work, I supported what they wanted to teach my children, I paid for them to teach, I worked on bulletin boards, colored books for them, bound books for them, helped with children in the classroom, I listened to them complain about children and about administration and about labor unions and their rights. If I had to do it all over again, I'd home school, no doubt.