I don’t feel like doing my homework!
I’ll do my homework later!
Are these statements echoed in your household as your child arrives home each school
day? Perhaps the following ideas will help to make homework time less of a chore and
more of a learning experience. Yes, at times, it can even be enjoyable! Please read on
and, hopefully, one or more of these options may work well for your family.
• Designate a time that works best for your family according to each day’s schedule. Work schedules, sports, after school activities, dinnertime, bedtime, etc. all make time management challenging. Try to keep the time consistent when possible.
•A large family calendar containing each family member’s activities is a good organizing tool and could be a good reminder of what each day will bring. Add homework time to each day.
•Choose a quiet and comfortable setting.
•Provide a sturdy pocket homework folder for each child with one side marked “To Do” and the other “Finished”.
•Have a box, container, or a special tray for each child. It can be used for
their papers, forms to fill out for school, newsletters, and other school or
extracurricular activities information.
•Keep a container filled with needed school supplies so they are readily available.
•Have a timer for the child who tends to stop working frequently and is not using their time wisely. This will give you more control over time management and also provide a challenge. This challenge may keep the child more engaged.
•Older siblings can play “school” with the younger ones. Other family members and friends can also join in on the fun.
•Memorizing spelling words, addition and subtraction facts, multiplication tables, vocabulary word meanings, facts for tests, etc. can be done during breakfast, dinner, car rides, waiting for appointments, cleaning together, and any other opportunity that presents itself. You can even make a game out of it.
•Reading with your child is very important. To keep them interested, use a variety of techniques ( your child reads, shared reading, the child reads silently and you ask questions, you read, etc. ).
•Allow for “breaks” to stretch, have a snack, or just relax for a few minutes.
•A “reasonable” amount of time should be designated for homework. If your child is no longer engaged and appears frustrated, perhaps you could finish at another time.
•Keep in regular contact with your child’s teacher. They often have a good
compromise or solution for you and your child.
Children love to learn and guiding them through this process is very rewarding!
-Anne McAndrews, Tutor at ILC. Anne has a Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction & Bachelors Degree in Elementary Education. She has taught kindergarten through fourth grade in the Orland Park School District for over 30 years and was a Curriculum Team Leader for Centennial School.