The children are settled back into school so how are you coping with their homework? Are you struggling to set a regular home work time? Do you worry that they’re not doing their homework? Are you worried that you can’t do it! Is homework starting to become an issue? I thought it would be helpful for you if I shared 5 tips that will help you to help your child.
Before I do that I’d like to share a story with you. When I was training to be a teacher I had to shadow an 11 year old boy through his school day. I didn’t have to remember anything, or to be honest do any of the work, but I had to stick with him for the day, much to his dismay!
What shocked me about this day was just how tired I was at the end of it. Moving from room to room and having new facts and information thrown at me all day was exhausting. When I got home all I wanted to do was put my feet up with a nice cup of coffee. I think as adults we can forget how exhausting a school day can be. The last thing your child wants to do when they get home is more work!
So, What Can You Do to Help Your Child?
1. Establish a Homework Time
It is a great idea to establish a regular time for your children to do their homework but don’t make that time the minute they come home from school. They need some down time and usually some more energy in the form of food. Some sensitive children may even need some alone time to ground themselves after spending the day with so many of their peers.
2. It’s Their Homework Not Yours!
I know you want to help and when they get stuck it’s your job to guide and encourage but their teacher wants to see an authentic piece of your child’s homework not a perfect piece of your homework.
3. Be Patient
Sometimes your child needs time to think. You may ask them a question, and then feel the need to fill the gap if their response is silence. Teachers learn early on to hold the space and give them time to think. Often they’ll get to the correct response, it simply takes them a bit longer than you.
4. Be Careful with your Words
Along with patience you need to be careful what you say. It’s very easy to say something like “Come on, this is easy” when something looks simple to you. If they don’t come out with an answer straight away then it’s not easy for them and you saying it is only makes them feel worse.
5. Praise, Praise, Praise
We all need encouragement and praise so make it a habit to acknowledge all the things they are getting right. This will help to build their confidence and in my experience confidence is the key to success.
I hope these points will help you. Are there any other aspects of homework that are causing you problems? Please post your questions below. Let’s make homework a more pleasant experience for you and your child.