Homework tips for parents
Understand the benefits of homework. If you're not convinced that homework matters, it will be even harder to convince your kids. While there are many arguments against kids having to undertake large volumes of homework, there are also good reasons behind a moderate amount of homework:
Homework reinforces learning taught during the day
Some learning won't stick as well unless kids give it more practice and the classroom environment isn't necessarily going to provide adequate time for more practice. This is of special importance for math and critical thinking skills.
Homework instills self-discipline
Homework teaches time management, organisational skills, concentration skills, and self-responsibility. Self-discipline is a key life skill that can only be learned in the doing.
Homework will rarely be appealing
Most kids don't like doing homework. Be a facilitator rather than a force to be reckoned with. You can cajole, plead, yell, threaten or bribe kids to do homework, but it's unlikely this will make your kids more likely to want to do their homework. And who is spending their time standing over them instead of getting all your other tasks done? That's right – you. Instead, aim to facilitate the homework process as much as possible.
Provide a comfortable, well-lit place for your child to do homework
Ensure that your child has everything needed to do homework, from pens and paper, to a laptop and books, and be sure to get special project materials in advance, to avoid the excuse of "I don't have what I need".
Take a moment to sit down with them when they start homework to see what else they might need.
Encourage your child to keep you informed about homework progress and any interesting facts that arise out of it.
Find more homework articles:
- The hands-off homework strategy for parents
- Homework tips for parents
- Teach your child to manage their own study
- Understanding learning styles
- Preparing your child for success at school
- Decoding the homework debate
- Tips to make homework happen
- Improving school success
- 5 ways to keep school kids organised
This article was written by Alex Brooks for Kidspot, New Zealand's leading education resource for parents.