Do you and your children fight constantly about homework? You nag them
incessantly while they procrastinate until you are all stressed out and
unhappy. Some families have daily homework struggles that can be mitigated
with a few steps from the pros.
Start by getting involved with your child’s homework schedule. Communicate
regularly with teachers and tutors so you know what tests and assignments
are coming up. There’s a temptation to help with projects or even
to do homework yourself, but teaching effective executive skills like
prioritizing, organizing, studying and memorizing will only come with practice.
If your child is smart but scattered,
consider a tutor who will help them with executive skills so that they are organized and
can excel academically. Honing their executive skills will allow them
to become effective independent learners who can cope on their own and
will put an end to your daily homework headaches.
Ensure that your child has a good place to do homework that is free from
distraction or disturbance. It should be well-lit and comfortable and
there should be no TV, texting or other time-consuming distractions.
Choose the right time of day. Asking your child to do homework right after
school may be a little much and it’s understandable that they will
want some time to decompress. Doing homework too late at night when they
are tired is also a bad idea.
Help your child with time management so that they factor in enough time
to complete homework, assignments and bigger projects to avoid the last
minute panic. Encourage them to do the most difficult tasks first.
Food can play a big part in your child’s mood. Ensure that they eat
healthy meals so that they have the energy they need to concentrate and
avoid too much sugar.
Exercise may be just what the doctor ordered. Exercise helps to relieve
stress and elevate mood, improve concentration and stimulate higher cognitive
functions. If your child is struggling to get motivated or battling with
an academic task, get them to do a little exercise.
Offer rewards and reinforce positive homework habits. If homework is done
by the stipulated time and without you having to ask about it, offer rewards
Don’t let homework drag on all night. It may be good to let your
child take a break and come back to it or to face the consequences of
not turning in homework on time.
Be patient; changing ingrained habits can take time. Always work with the
tutor who will both have great suggestions on how to get your child motivated.
They can also let you know what your child needs to work on in order to
improve their academic performance.
Pic by Michael Bentley