Helping Children with Homework and Learning
The role of a parent is extremely important in helping children with homework and learning. Since children aren’t in a closely-monitored environment under the supervision of their teachers, parents are their only source of help, guidance, and inspiration. Let’s take a look at different ways through which parents can help their children with homework and learning.
Homework is immensely helpful for children in many ways. It helps the children to read, understand, and follow directions in an independent manner. Children also learn time-management skills, use their creative abilities, develop a deep sense of responsibility, and start taking pride in their work.
Setting Up a Homework Station
It’s important to setup a portable workstation for your children. The dining room or kitchen table can be a nice place for younger children as they feel more warm and comfortable around their parents, and you can easily provide them assistance and encouragement while looking after your chores as well. However, older children usually like to work in their own rooms. In that case, it’s the responsibility of a parent to keep an eye on their activities during homework-hours and to review their homework after it’s done.
Make sure that the homework station is comfortable, well-lit, stocked with necessary school supplies such as; pencils, pen, paper, calculator, stapler, and references, such as; a dictionary and thesaurus. The homework station should also be quiet and absolutely free from different distractions such as; video games, TV, phone calls and so on.
Placement of a Computer
If your children require a computer for doing their homework, always place it in a public space, not in their bedroom. In this way, you can keep an eye on them any they’ll be encouraged to play video games, surf the internet, or chat with friends during their study time. You can also opt for parental control which is easily available through internet service providers.
Providing Support and Guidance
Parents are required to provide proper guidance and support during their children’s homework. You must help them in interpreting the assignment instructions, answer their queries regarding work, and review their completed work. But, never complete your children’s assignments for them or provide them with the right answers. Help your children in developing the problem-solving skills for completing their assignments on their own. In this way, they’ll learn better, gain confidence in their skills, and develop a habit of doing things on their own.
Develop a Strategy for Homework Sessions
Help your children in developing a homework strategy which suits their temperament and workload. Every child is different in this regard; some children like to complete their tough assignments first, when they are fresh and charged-up, while others may prefer to get the less-challenging tasks out of the way first. Help them in coming up with a strategy that suits them best, and allow them breaks if needed. Small breaks during homework sessions are necessary to reenergize and develop fresh focus.
Make Use of Homework Timers
If your child gets easily distracted during work, homework timers are a great way to keep them focused. A timer will also help your child in developing a proper sense of time. Choose a timer that suits your child, such as, if your child gets distracted by noise, a ticking timer won’t be a great choice, instead, vibrating timers or an hourglass timer should be preferred.
Make Use of the Mixing-Up Technique
For some children, studying and learning is difficult because they need to learn things in a variety of ways. If your child struggles with writing assignments, you can help them by acting it out first. Make them learn by verbal communication. Make use of vocabulary words in your everyday conversation with your child. This will immensely help them in developing good writing skills.
In case of math, you can make the counting and calculations easy by making use of household items in solving problems. For instance, teach them fractions with slices of pizza.
Communicate with Teachers
Always keep in touch with your children’s teachers throughout the year in order to stay informed about your child’s progress. Never miss the parent-teacher meetings, and maintain a healthy dialogue. Teachers will inform you about your child’s classroom activities and how you can help them with their weak points and shortcomings. Always ask about the results of class tests, quizzes and projects accordingly.
Work on Developing Study Skills
Help your child in developing effective study skills which will make them learn better. Ask them to take notes, highlight the important points, and underline them while reading. Also show them the use of flashcards.
Take Notice If Your Child Continuously Struggles With Homework
If your child lags behind in class and also consistently struggles with homework assignments, then you need to take notice as this may indicate a problem.
In some cases, the child simply needs more guidance to develop better study habits. You must make sure that your child properly writes down the assignments and make them keep a homework notebook. In other cases, constant struggle with learning and understanding might indicate issues such as; ADHD i.e. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, learning disabilities like Dyslexia, or hearing or vision difficulties. It’s extremely important to recognize these problems early on in order to help your child in the best possible ways.
Maintain a Warm and Friendly Relationship
Always maintain such an attitude with your child that they’re never scared to share their problems or mistakes with you. Never shout or yell at your child while looking at their performance report cards. It won’t help them learn or study better. Instead, your child will feel humiliated and they might never want to confide in you again. This attitude can also make your child rebellious. The best approach is to talk to your child and discuss about why they didn’t perform well in a test or assignment, and how the mistakes can be avoided in future. If your child specifically struggles in certain areas, such as; math or writing, allot more time at home for these subjects and get more involved in their study habits.
These are some of the most significant tips and techniques which will greatly help you in dealing with your child’s homework in the most appropriate ways.