Homework Time

Doing homework feels like a difficult chore for many children and adolescents. After all, they have just spent 6 hours or more at school where they need to sit in one place most of the day and exert continuous mental effort paying attention (sometimes to material that is not inherently interesting to them). So coming home and doing more of the same is not something they are looking forward to! Here are 5 tips that will make homework easier for your children and for you.

1. Give your children at least 30-60 minutes after school when they can have a snack, run around (to expend some pent up energy) and/or have some down time listening to music, watching a video, etc.

2. Structure the homework so that it is done the same time every day. This makes it predictable and it becomes part of the daily routine. Children like structure and do well with structure.

3. Be present or very nearby during homework time. Being present gives the message that homework time is important to you. Also, when children feel burnt out after the school day your presence provides children with the additional structure they need to stay motivated, attentive and productive.

4. Go over the homework with them. This shows the children you are interested in what they are doing and willing to spend the time to help them.

5. Be positive and give praise! So often we tend to focus on what the child did incorrectly rather than what they did correctly. Although it is important to help them correct errors, it is even more important to make them feel good about what they have done correctly! This builds self esteem and a sense of accomplishment.

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