Getting your children to do their homework can sometimes be a chore—especially if it’s a challenging subject for them. There is no one secret formula to motivate your child or any single method that works for everyone, but there are ways you can help your child while making the experience a little smoother—especially with looming school closures.
Read on for some homework tips for parents and ways to make it more fun!
Tips For Parents Helping With Homework
Do You Have Enough Time To Help?
Raising a family in today’s busy world can mean you don’t always have time to spare. Before you start helping your child with homework, be sure you can carve out enough time to help them on a consistent basis. If you can’t, consider enlisting outside help like one of your child’s peers, teachers, relatives, or a tutor.
Do You Understand The Material?
As adults who have passed the same subjects your child is now exploring, we might be inclined to believe we know it all. Understanding how to help your child with homework comes from understanding what the homework is covering. Can you remember everything you learned about algebra in the 5th grade? Chances are you can’t recount all the details. It’s okay to be a bit rusty, but don’t try to explain something you’re not sure about. This could confuse your child further and cause frustration for both of you.
Are You Prepared To Do Your Own Homework?
Leading off of the last point, relearn what you can. Read help articles or watch YouTube tutorials to see if you can refresh yourself on the subject and understand the material enough to help your child. There are so many resources on the web that you can use to your advantage—making the learning a shared experience between you and your child!
How To Help Your Child With Homework
Believe it or not, there are ways to help your child enjoy or at least tolerate homework time. We’ve gathered a few ideas to get started:
- Be Consistent
- Understand The Struggles
- Don’t Limit Study Spaces
- Separate Spaces For Siblings
- Have Some Snacks
- Make Breaks Fun
- Reward Effort
Children, especially young ones, need consistency and routine. Aim to make homework time the same time every day but be flexible when unexpected events occur, such as illnesses. That said, it’s better to stick to the same schedule as much as possible to establish good homework habits.
If your child is struggling with a subject it can be frustrating and might come across as grumpiness. Talk to your child and try to get to the bottom of their difficulties and be supportive. See what you can do to help—whether it’s researching the topic on your own or seeking outside resources.
A comfortable child is easier to work with. You don’t need to sit on hard dining chairs to get homework done. Plop down on a comfy couch or sit on the bed with their homework—switch it up! A change of scenery can help stimulate the brain and make the homework experience smoother.
Wrangling multiple kids and getting them to concentrate on their work is a challenge. Giving them separate study spaces in the house can help reduce bickering or distracting chatter. Check in with each child every now and again and help out as needed. If one child needs more attention, try staggering each child’s homework time if possible.
We all love a good snack. Prepare a tray of healthy snacks like sliced apples or cheese and crackers to munch on while you and your child work through their homework. This can go a long way to help make homework time more enjoyable.
Taking breaks can allow ideas to set in and are a good way to reset if your child is getting frustrated. Ease stress by making study breaks fun or relaxing. Take your child on a walk around the block to enjoy some fresh air or play a game or two of Go Fish with a deck of cards.
Prepare a reward for your child to work toward. It could be something bigger like a trip to the zoo if they complete all their homework every week for a month. Or it can be as small as giving them a little extra TV time if they work through a difficult assignment.
Need A Little Extra Homework Help?
Life gets busy and parents don’t always have enough time or knowledge to help with homework. That’s okay! Raising a family isn’t easy—they say it takes a village for a reason. If you’re struggling to give your child the assistance they need, we can help.