Out of all of the challenges faced by parents and children, academic frustration and completing homework are the top two. Combine these, and you have problems. Homework help is just around the corner. Follow these tips for a more sane homework experience.
“The homework we give is not busy work. It might be preparation for the next day’s lesson, practice that day’s lesson, or it might be to research beyond the textbook, or it might be to study for exams.” – Nels Pitotti
Today it’s not uncommon to hear of cities, counties, and even states making homework illegal. Many families are against homework, as are many teachers. However, most places still allow homework and even promote it.
While it may be challenging – especially if your child is already frustrated with school – it is a necessary and positive tool that acts to further elaborate the skills presented in the classroom.
In fact, all homework issued to your child is given for the purpose to practice skills, preparation for the next level, or as an extension to reinforce their knowledge. This brings us to the first tip:
Tip #1: Encourage Your Child by Explaining the Purpose of Homework
A child that is already frustrated with school and the lessons presented there will often become frustrated when they receive homework because they don’t understand why their teacher insists on assigning it. You can encourage your child by explaining that it is a review, preparation, or the practice of skills to make them better at the skills and concepts presented.
The child that understands the purpose of their homework is a child that will be more receptive to having homework assigned and completing it.
Why Do Children Become Frustrated With Their Homework?
Out of all of the reasons that exist for frustrating with homework, the most common is that the child doesn’t completely understand the skills and concepts being presented in the assignment. When those skills and concepts are not understood, the child must work harder and longer to gain an understanding. In turn, this prolongs the amount of time that they must spend doing homework. As a parent, homework help is the best thing you can do for them.
Tip #2: Review the Skills and Concepts Presented to Enrich Understanding
Parents typically have a broader understanding of the world and the concepts, thereof. It is quite likely that you will be familiar with the skills and concepts being presented to your child through their homework.
If so, review it with them.
You know your child, the way that they learn, and what drives them to become frustrated. Chances are, you will know how to best present the information to them so that it “clicks”. If you find that you are not comfortable with this task, you may enlist the assistance of a tutor or academic coach to review the skills and concepts presented to enrich understanding.
Homework Schedules and Time Management Routines
When a child gets home from school, they are often looking forward to a break. They may also be looking forward to spending time with friends, playing, or participating in extracurricular activities. In most instances, the last thing on their mind is homework.
If homework IS on their mind, it is quite likely that they are looking forward to it with nothing but dread. You can help by helping your child with a homework schedule or a time management routine. Each child is different. The schedule that you create will need to be tailored to them. It should go around extracurricular activities, play time, chore time, and other important times.
Tip #3: Work with Your Child to Create a Time Management Routine, Ensuring “Fun” Time is Scheduled
If your child is frustrated with their homework, the last thing you should do is make them do it right away, before anything else. You should also avoid creating a homework schedule that forces them to sit for long periods of time doing the assignments. Break the homework up a little, mix in family time, fun time, and all of the rest. You will quickly discover that they experience less frustration, gain a better understanding of the content that they are reviewing or preparing for, and that they are happier.