The start of the school year also signals the start of homework. Although getting home from school and getting to work can be frustrating at times, it does not need to be. These simple tips will help make homework easier and more efficient, allowing for more time to enjoy being a kid. Before you know it, your little genius will be eager to get started!
Set aside a designated space for your child to complete his or her homework. The area should be well-lit, quiet, and away from distractions. Needed materials such as pencils, paper, and notebooks should be kept nearby. Make sure your child has the ability to personalize his or her space; it will help make it more inviting and exciting to use.
When possible, dedicate a set time every day for homework. If your child’s schedule varies after-school, set a specific time for homework each day. Setting a routine creates a habit and encourages independence. Pay attention to what times he/she performs best. Some may need a snack before starting; others may concentrate better in the early evening.
On days when there is a heavy homework load, make sure to break assignments up into smaller parts. Concentrating and sitting for too long can lead to frustration and inattention. Small breaks can be a big help. If your child has a long-term project or research assignment, work on it periodically instead of cramming it all in one sitting. Big tasks are easier when broken up.
During homework time, make sure you are available to help your child. You can clarify directions, help them research information, or reteach a skill that may need refreshing. Ultimately, the goal is for them to complete their homework with your guidance. When you show interest, you lead by example!
Hands-on learning is learning that sticks. Whenever possible, integrate homework with real-life events. If your child is learning measurement, bake a cake. Learning about life cycles? Go to the park and observe butterflies. Hands-on experiences help to enrich learning and lead to deeper understanding.