Chances are homework will not be your child's favorite activity. At the end of the day, the last thing you want is to argue with your child about doing homework. Rather than prod and argue, here are some suggestions to help you structure homework.
Schedule Homework Time
Set a homework time and stick to it. Putting off homework prolongs the agony of having to get it done. If you child says he has no homework, be sure tot sit with him and check his agenda to make sure he didn't miss any assignments. Empty agenda book, email your child's teachers and check to see how often homework is assigned.
Homework as a Priority
Participation in activities is an important part of your child's social and emotional growth. However, attempting to squeeze homework into a long list of after school activities can exasperate his homework anxieties. Limit the amount of activities your child gets involved in so that he can manage his schedule. If together you are having a difficult time deciding which activities are most important, have him rate each activity on a scale of 1-5 (5 being die without and 1 being could live without). You may be pleasantly surprised at how much you agree.
Get Help With It
Social phone calls should be discouraged during homework time. As a matter of fact, put the smartphone away! Have your child turn it off completely or hand it over to you. However, a quick call to a friend or classmate to discuss an assignment could be useful, especially if your child is too confused by the material. If you child seems to need excessive help, talk with his teacher about getting extra help.
Creating a Happy and Productive Homework Environment
To help the process go smoothly, you can create a work environment that is both fun and functional. Below are some tips to help.
Pick a Place
Designate a spot in your home - a desk, kitchen or dining room table or any place with a good writing surface, for your child to work. Be sure the lighting is good minimize any noise or distractions. If a private place is not possible, consider creating a cubicle from a cardboard box #24" long and wide# to stand up on the work surface. Working on a desk or table versus on the floor or on a bed improves posture and keeps your child alert.
Create a Portable Tool Box
Each time your child has to get up and find an eraser or pen, he is subject to distractions. Keep your child focused by creating a box of supplies that can be transported to his workplace. Some "tools" to consider:
- Pencil Sharpener
- Paper clips
- Hole puncher
- Stapler, staples & stapler remover
- Post it notepads
A homework folder or special homework section in his binder where your child can keep his homework assignments would be helpful. Be sure to help you child make use of the school agenda. Help him learn how to plot out long term assignments in order to do a little bit each day to prevent him from becoming overwhelmed the day before a long-term assignment is due.
Designate a Showcase
Designate a place where your child can up up the work his is proud of. This can be a bulliten board in his room or the refrigerator. This will give him incentive to keep doing his best.