Homework’s Here. What’s Your Plan?
While many students and parents would rejoice to have no more homework, the reality is it’s here to stay.
So what’s your family’s homework plan?
Creating a habit around homework is essential to getting work done on time, eliminating stress and frustration, and balancing schoolwork with other activities. Here’s a synopsis of how your family can tackle homework with ease, from a New York Times parenting blog (which refers to research published in the American Journal of Family Therapy).
1. Schedule 10 minutes per day per grade for schoolwork.
2nd graders should spend 20 minutes working, 6th graders should spend 60 minutes working, etc. Students should work to complete assigned homework, and if there is none or they finish early, they should spend the time reading. Homework will eventually become less of a chore, and more of a routine, just another part of your child’s overall education.
(Read more on effective scheduling)
2. Pick a time and place to complete work (not necessarily the same time every day depending on other activities), and stick to it.
Have all materials handy, set a timer, and get down to business.
(Read more on creating a work/study stadium)
3. Remove distractions.
Turn off TVs, radios, cell phones, and laptops. If computers are required to complete work, there should be no social media sites, instant messaging, or email in use. Use student work time to complete a quiet activity of your own.
(Read more on battling distractions and being productive)
4. Step back and let children complete work on their own.
Teachers don’t want to know how well parents know how to do long division, they want to know how well the student does it. Giving kids the answers may lessen stress, but it also lessens their ability to truly learn and understand their work. Give assistance/advice sparingly and praise their effort, even if the outcome is wrong. Mistakes are part of learning!
(Read more on getting involved in your child’s learning)
5. When time is up, walk away.
Kids might be concerned if work is not completed, but it’s important to have an end in sight. Setting a time limit encourages them to stay focused, prioritize what needs to be done, and helps create balance between schoolwork and other activities.