Most parents with school going children would agree that homework can be a battle. Things are relatively easy when kids are in the pre school age as children have little homework, but as kids start growing, the number of assignments starts increasing, their preference for sports and other activities also increases leaving little time for homework.
There is a growing debate on whether homework is important for the growth of children or it should be expelled. Some parents believe that kids need to have time for extracurricular activities for their complete growth while some believe that by doing their homework kids develop various skills.
Let’s understand what do kids learn by doing home work?
- They develop the attitude to read and follow directions independently.
- They learn time management skills by completing their home work in the give time frame.
- Completing the given task helps them develop a sense of responsibility.
- They learn work ethics.
How can parent help the kids in their home work?
Parents play a very important role in helping their kids finish their homework. Parents should always be there to support, guide, instruct, answer questions and review the completed work.
Studies suggest that children are more successful in schools when their parents take active interest in their home work; this is because it shows that what they are doing is important.
Most parents do not have the patience to sit with their kids and help them complete their homework. They prefer to take the easy route by completing their work sheets or assignments or provide the right answer. It is important to focus on helping kids develop the problem solving ability rather than spoon feeding them with the answers.
Here are several ways in which every parent can make homework easier.
Set a fixed time schedule during the day in which your child must complete his school related activities. Make sure that the school activities are performed in a distraction free area.
Growing children tend to come up with excuses that they have completed their assignment before the schedule timing, even when this is true, parents should not cancel or make changes in the routine set. They can help kids to utilize this time for school focused reading and enhancing their knowledge and vocabulary.
- Organize homework schedule
Teach children strategies on how to handle home work overloads. Some kids like to complete the harder assignments first when they are fresh and have started with the projects while others prefer to complete the easier tasks first.
By helping the children approach their home work assignments with a strategy will teach them skills to do things independently later.
- Inculcate organization skills
Children are in the process of learning new things and behavior. They learn organizational skills by practicing over time. Kids come across assignments on different subjects and different deadlines for each project. Teach your child how to use the planner or a calendar to get organized and complete the assignment before the give time frame.
Kids often find themselves lost while completing their school assignments so encourage children to ask for help if needed.
Being able to raise doubts and getting them cleared helps in developing their confidence.
- Co relate school learning’s with the real world
Talk to your kids about skills that they learn also applies in the real world. For instance, completing home work in the given time is similar to how adults have to meet deadlines offered in the office. Co relating behaviors motivates them to adapt to these skills faster and in better manner.
How to set up the study place?
Parents should ensure that the child has a well lit and comfortable study area. The study table should be quiet and away from distraction like television, video games etc. It should have all the necessary stationeries like pencil, pen, eraser, calculator, dictionary etc. to avoid distractions of searching for objects while studying.
If your kids need to take the help of a computer for completing their assignment, try to set up the computer in a common place so that his attention is not diverted to chat with friends, surf the internet or play games.
Home work problems:
As children grow school assignments start to add up and become difficult to manage. In most cases, children need to put in more sincerity and practice better study habits.
If any particular assignment is creating more difficulties, parents should speak to the teacher pointing out the difficulties faced by the child. However consistent struggle with completing assignments could indicate a hidden problem. If the child finds it hard to grasp on a particular subject, there may be signs of broader issues like ADHD, learning disabilities etc.
By reviewing the child assignment and interacting with the school teachers can help in identifying any learning problems at an early stage.
To sum up, the key to helping kids with their homework is to keep up the participation at all levels. Let the kids know that you are always available if there is a snag.
Parents can encourage the kids by being good role models and showing their love for learning. This would help in conveying the message that learning is a joyful journey at all stages.