by Peter Minkoff
Contributing Author, a passionate writer, professional fashion, lifestyle, and health, expert
Handling homework on a daily basis seems to be the most hateful thing, both for kids and their parents. It’s a never-ending battle where everyone is tired and anxious. Parents are yearning for it to end so they could wind down and relax at the end of the day and all kids want is to play.
Even the most enthusiastic kids start stalling at some point and they all have different personalities and needs. So, whatever you decide to do in order to make homework time less of a hassle, you need to consider what works best for their learning styles.
Not all tips will do the trick for every student, but here are ten you could try out.
Designate a homework space
Designate a specific homework place in your house, a desk in kids’ room, your home office or a nook in the kitchen, and stock it up with plenty of stationery and supplies. In this way, you’ll avoid stalling the kids are prone to when it’s time for homework because they can’t settle down and find their pencils and paper.
Some kids have to be away from the noise, while others need their parents close by in case they have to ask for help. Talk to your child about the best place to do homework and find a solution that works best for their unique needs.
To make sure your child will be efficient and productive, remove any distractions and possible temptations while they concentrate on their homework: turn off the TV and music, and put away their phone and other screens. Make sure they understand the rules for homework completion and what happens if it’s not done in a timely manner.
Set up rules and a schedule
As mentioned above, setting up rules and a schedule is an essential part of the homework routine, but it can be a tricky thing as the family dynamic is changeable throughout the year. However, you can establish certain ground rules and when kids know exactly what is expected of them, there will be less complaining and procrastinating.
Consider your child’s unique needs
All kids are different and unique, and so are their needs and learning styles. Some prefer to do their homework the minute they get home, whereas others need time to decompress. Some kids like their parents to be around in order to stay on track, while others struggle to concentrate if anyone is present.
Whatever their needs and preferences are, watch them closely and take cues from them so you could help them be most productive in any work environment.
Know yourself and your own limits
Educational techniques change over time and it’s not always easy for parents to keep up. Be aware of your own limitations and know when it’s time to call for help. You can sometimes turn to older siblings, your science whiz friend, a private tutor or get great homework help from reading club experts who can offer daily support for your child’s assignments.
Understand the school homework policies
It’s also important you understand your child’s teacher’s rules regarding homework and what the consequences are if it’s not completed. The rules vary at different stages of education and knowing what they are and how your child behaves at school when they miss an assignment can help you manage things at home.
Communicate with teachers
If you see your child is struggling with homework, make sure you have open communication with their teacher that allows a collaborative conversation between the two of you so you could come up with the most suitable solution. Sometimes kids need an alternative approach in order to understand a problem and get through a difficult lesson.
Give positive feedback
Everyone likes words of praise, especially young learners. It gives them a boost of confidence and motivation for future challenges. By giving positive feedback and commending their improvement, you kids will be more motivated to do their best every time.
Not all kids are motivated by good grades to do their homework well and in time. For those who are not, you need to find alternative ways to stimulate them. It could be an incentive as simple as a fun activity after the homework is completed, or an elaborate one that includes collecting points that are later used to “buy” privileges. These reward systems work best when parents develop them together with their children as it gives the kids a sense of control, which makes it more likely to be successful.
Give your kids a break
Following a daily homework routine can become overwhelming, so give your kids a break. Let them complain a bit and show some understanding. Once they feel acknowledged, kids will be less frustrated and more open to your suggestions.
Doing homework is necessary but it shouldn’t be a battle every day. When you work together with your children to find new and creative ways to get the hard stuff done, things will become less tedious and more enjoyable.
Peter is a health writer at HighStyleLife magazine, living between Europe and New Zealand. Follow Peter on Twitter for more tips.