As a parent, you want your child to do the best they can in school. A big part of their success has to do with their homework, which can be a challenge to get them to complete. Instead of trying to control your child, try guiding them in a direction that they want to do their homework, instead of dreading it. Getting them excited about learning new things is key, and here are different ways you can do this.
Offer rewards as motivation
When your child dreads doing something, they need motivation to complete it. Offering rewards for completing their homework will help them get it done faster. Tell them that’ll you’ll do an activity as a family together once they’re done with their homework. And there are so many activities to choose from: you could go birdwatching, create your own mini greenhouse, build and paint a birdhouse, look at stars through a telescope, or camp in the backyard or go on a treasure hunt together (like they do in The Goonies). These activities are not only things your child will enjoy doing, but also they’re great learning opportunities for your child. They will give your child a chance to get outside and enjoy nature, so their mind isn’t constantly on homework and school.
Let kids make their own choices
Nobody wants to be a “helicopter parent” and your kids don’t want that either. It’s recommended to back off a bit and let your child make their own choices – and let them live with the consequences of their actions. If you’re too controlling and a power struggle develops, your child may choose to do poorly on their homework just to spite you. That’s the last thing you want. Leaving the choice up to your child will help them develop morally. They can decide to either to do their homework with effort, or decide to not to do it, and see their grades drop. If your child decides to stop trying and they start to do poorly in school, that’s when you can insert yourself in and help them develop a plan to succeed.
Help them develop a checklist
Your child can start to feel anxious if they come home from school and feel overwhelmed by the amount of things they have to get done by the end of the day. Teaching them how to complete one thing at a time will help them feel better about their workload and help them tackle it in a more efficient way. Use a homework checklist to help them with their assignments. Teach them how to write out all of the assignments they have to complete in a list, and then cross off each item as they complete it. Crossing things off a list once you’ve done them is rewarding and will help them keep track of all the assignments they need to complete.
We recommend tackling the hardest homework assignments first (since those are usually what kids put off the most) and then working towards the easiest assignments.
Stay in contact with their teachers
Children tend to like their teachers, especially at a younger age. Showing your child that you and their teacher are partners and in regular contact. Their teachers will likely tell you to contact them if you have any homework concerns with your child. Let your child know that you’re on their side, they don’t want to feel ganged up on. If you’re struggling with the way their teacher is teaching the concept of math or science to your child (especially if it was taught to you in a different way in your generation), ask them to send you a lesson sheet that you can use to go over with your child.