5 Homework Tips
These tips are great for ADHD kids too!!
1. Get into a routine as soon as possible
When it comes to homework it is really important that you have some sort of routine. It is no use just squashing some time into a busy afternoon and to expect the child to get on with the work on their own. It doesn't really matter what time the homework is done, as long as your child is alert and that it becomes a habit. Some kids prefer to do their homework straight after school and other kids are too tired and need to relax first. It doesn't really matter what the routine is as long as it suits you and your child and that homework becomes a habit and is predictable in its pattern.
Get more help with homework - waking up from the homework nightmare
I have always found homework to be a pain and feel that younger children, especially, have far too much of it. But I can see the merit of using homework time as a way of encouraging your child to develop a good study habit. If your child doesn't have homework on a particular day you could use the time to read to your child, or to encourage reading on his own. If you are a stay at home mom with only one child a homework routine will be easier to implement then if you have more then one child and are a working mom. Take this into consideration when you draw up a homework plan. Sometimes the children will be able to sit together and do their homework without distracting each other, but it may be that they need a quiet space where they aren't distracted by their siblings.
2. Find a nice quiet place where your child can do his homework
It is a good idea to find a place in the house where there is a desk or table that can be used for homework. Make sure that you have drawer or box where you keep the stationary needed for homework. You should also include a spare dictionary, calculator and anything else needed at homework time. Have a clock or timer on the desk so that the child can measure his homework time and doesn't have to keep asking you the time.
3. You will need to supervise the homework
If you supervise your child's homework it gives you the opportunity to keep in touch with what your child is learning at school. It will also help you to evaluate how your child is doing at school. It's not your job to teach your child new work during homework time and it's also not your job to do the homework. But I am sure that at some stage you will be tempted to do both. If your child doesn't understand the homework make sure you bring this up with the teacher as soon as possible. It is really important that teachers do not give children homework that has not been covered in class. Sometimes the homework load may get too much and you will may be tempted to do it or finish it yourself. Other moms will swear that they have never been tempted to do this. Do not believe them. You only have to go to school on the day when projects are being handed in to see the level of the parent's participation. If your child is not coping with the amount of homework given it may be that there is an underlying problem that needs to be identified. It also may be that there is simply an overload and this needs to be addressed with the school.
4. Encourage your child
Encourage your child while doing his homework but be careful that you do not scold a child who is struggling. Homework time can quickly become a battle of wills and this is not healthy for either of you. It is an idea to encourage your child to to divide the homework assignment into "What I can do myself" and "What I need help with." Try to get your child to complete everything he can do on his own before he asks you for help. This builds self esteem, responsibility and a sense of achievement.
5. When homework gets too much - seek help.
If homework simply gets too much for your child (or you) there are some options to help you:
- Find a school that has less homework (this is a very good option),
- Find a school with an aftercare where homework is done before going home, some schools have a prep or homework hour
- Send your child to an independent aftercare and homework centre.
- Hire an au pair or tutor to help your child with homework
- Ask your child's teacher if they (or another teacher) can work independently with your child.
Happy Homework Time!