“How much? How often? How can I help?”
These are 5 homework tips for parents. They will help parents and guardians with the tools to make homework time meaningful and successful.
Establish a Routine and Schedule
Set a specific time and place for homework and stick to the schedule as much as possible. Do not let your child wait until the evening to get started with homework. Limit distractions during homework time including unnecessary noise, activity, and phone calls. Your child should not be watching TV while completing homework or reading. These activities can take place after homework time or as a reward for completion.
Let Go and Let Learn
Assist your child in getting started with assignments by reading directions together or assisting him or her with the first problem, then leave. You can monitor and give feedback without doing all the work together. Your child should attempt as much of the homework as possible independently. It is also not your responsibility to correct your child’s homework or to ensure that your child turns in a perfect assignment. These errors are critical for a teacher in determining remediation, adjusting lessons, etc.
Help Your Child Organize
While it is preferred that your student takes as much responsibility as possible with homework, it might be necessary at times to help your child stay organized and on top of assignments and dates. Help your student divide assignments into smaller, more manageable parts, especially long-range homework assignments. For the first few weeks of school supervise that completed work leaves home in a neat and organized manner. Another way you can be involved is to help him or her plan study sessions and study for tests or quizzes.
Use Positive Reinforcement
Praise your child when he or she puts forth good efforts. Offer incentives for good grades and homework completion. If your student struggles to complete homework, consider agreeing on a homework contract to motivate your child. For example, “If you turn in all your work with good effort this week, you will earn …” These incentives do not need to cost money. They could be as simple as a family movie night with the movie of their choice, or any cost-free activities your student enjoys. Model a love of learning and reading with your student daily. Also be sure to schedule regular times throughout the week to go to the local library.
Seek Help when Necessary
Do not force your child to spend an excessive amount of time on homework. If he or she is struggling feel free to send a note to the teacher. The teacher needs to be aware of your child’s frustration levels as well as the amount of time it takes your student to complete tasks. Often, your teacher can plan remediation or set your child up with the appropriate tutoring services if needed. Also make sure your child has the number of a study buddy from the class to call for clarification of homework assignments.
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