“Mom, I need help with this problem.” “Dad, I cannot understand the question.”
What are your initial responses to such statements of your child? Get to action and help complete the homework? Well, your parental instinct may be efficient and help your child to complete the task faster, but it is not at all effective as you doing the work is not the intended goal. Renowned professor Cathy Vatterott defines the purpose of homework is to “make the students independent learners” and any more than necessary assistance from you kill it at its core. So, here are a few top homework tips for parents like you, who want your child to learn but also bail them out at times.
5 Ways to Help Your Child With Homework - Top Homework Tips
1. Help your child in some other way
Parents feel that solving the question directly for the students or guiding the children at every step are the only ways to helping your school going with homework. But you can also help your child by setting up a distraction-free zone for studying, assisting in preparing a schedule, making sure your child meets the deadline and more. Indirectly, you are actually helping in getting the job done and that too, without harming the actual goal.
2. Play the role of a mentor
However, the indirect role approach may not be effective for a child struggling with homework. Here, you need to get involved but instead of solving the problem directly, show him/her where the solution might be available. Guide your child to a book or show him/her how to search the right tutorial on YouTube. Allow the student to do his/her own research while you remain available for fringe support.
3. Let your child take responsibility
Sure, your child’s schedule is hectic but try not to bail him/her out of missing homework by providing an excuse to the teacher. Effective homework strategies dictate that the child take responsibility for his/her tasks. The drive to complete homework must come from the child only. When the student faces the consequences of missing homework, the motivation to do it the next time will become internal and responsibility will set in on its own.
4. Stay close to the student to supervise
But do not sit right beside your child and stare down at his/her task. Go back to the purpose of homework – it is to help your child to become independent learners. Independence comes from freedom and that is what you should exactly provide. Stay close to your child. Do your own work while he/she completes the homework. Keep away all the possible distractions and try to make the session as productive as possible for both of you.
5. Plan the rest sessions
The most effective contribution among all the ways to help your child with homework is to step in and allow your child to rest whenever you find the student is overworked. Often it will happen that the struggle is solely due to tiredness. Your child will not identify the issue but you can help him/her to take a quick snack break, maybe a brisk walk, or engage in some calming activity. Then, instruct him/her to restart and notice the difference in productivity.