No matter how you feel the subject, homework is a fact of life for most school children; depending on the teacher and school, homework may start as early as kindergarten. Learning how to manage their work early in life helps your child avoid many problems faced by students who do not learn these skills. Here are some ways you can help.
1. Provide a designated space in the house for homework. The space should be quiet, well-lit and private or semi-private. If you have several children using the same space or computer, create a homework schedule for them.
2. Build time for homework into the daily schedule. Set a time that works best for your child and remain consistent. Different times of day work better for different children; some do better doing their homework earlier in the afternoon, while some have an easier time later in the day (after dinner, for example). While children often need a break immediately after arriving home from school, set the schedule so they are not doing homework at the last minute. Weekend procrastinators are often burning the midnight oil on Sunday evening. Setting a time on Saturday for homework can help prevent this.
3. Set homework rules and be consistent. Work with your child to decide what rules work best. Some parents say no T.V., no eating, etc; however, some children work better with a little noise, such as a radio.
4. Make homework a priority. If your child knows from an early age that homework is important, something that you expect them to do, then managing the work later on will be easier. Giving your children the impression that homework isn’t important could contribute to poor school performance; even if you weren’t the best student, you should still try to stress the importance of education.
5. Be interested in what your child is studying. Simply by showing interest in what they are learning, you encourage your children to achieve. Ask questions (don’t drill), check your child’s homework for errors and encourage them to find the correct answers. Don’t do their homework for them, but do offer support and help if needed.
As mentioned in the first paragraph, homework management skills are a critical component to success in school. Start early and be consistent in order to help your child develop them.
by David McLeod
Owner School-Supply-List.com and Elementary School Teacher
David has been teaching elementary school in Central Texas for over 7 years and has over 15 years of experience in online education related websites and blogs.