Homework can be a nightmare for many families. Parents first must try to get children to do their homework, then try to avoid a fight as children balk at any help their parents try to offer. There can be whining, shouting, and even some crying.
And that's just from Mom and Dad.
Homework time doesn't have to be a battle. With a few rules and a bit of planning, it can be the most productive and effective part of your child's day. This year, make your school year resolution count by turning homework time into as enjoyable and easy of an experience as possible.
Establishing a specific time each weekday for your child to do homework will help build a routine that your child accepts and understands. Create the routine based on your child's schedule, including afterschool activities and sports. There will be days when the routine gets thrown off, but getting back into it is necessary so that your child knows what to expect and how to plan and prioritize her time.
2. Pick a Place
Once you know when your child will do her homework, find a good place in your home for her to use at homework time. It should be in a central location that is free from clutter and distractions. This designated spot will help your child stay focused throughout homework time.
3. Set Rules
Make sure to limit distractions and set rules for your child. This should include no television, no texting, and no social media. If you have to remove her phone, do so. It's important that your child follows the rules you set together to stay on task during homework time.
4. Be There
Don't hover over your child, but don't disappear. Homework allows your child to work and think independently, but stay close, or make sure you're available to answer any questions or to show support with encouragement. Try not to answer questions that you honestly don't know the answer to. Instead, try emailing the teacher or another student who does well in the subject to ask for help.
5. Stock Up on Supplies
Don't waste time looking for a pen or your child's notebooks. There should be a supply of pens, pencils, and paper on hand and easily accessible. In addition, your child should always have other necessary items with her, including calculator and textbooks, so that she is ready to work at homework time.
When your child starts to fade, make sure there is a healthy snack on hand to pep her up. Sliced apples or a bowl of almonds will both work well. Plus, having something to crunch can help keep her from getting bored or distracted.