School Homework Hacks
SCHOOL HOMEWORK HACKS
The gentle reminders of school are upon us in mid-July with school supplies in stores and back-to-school commercials on T.V. Those things serve as reminders that summer is coming to an end and with that end comes the big transition to back-to-school. This transition includes new schedules, new teachers and of course …
I think one of the biggest challenges, at least for my children, was figuring out the specifics related to homework. Should it be done right after school? After dinner? It really depends on the child and their individual needs. I think it is important to start thinking about all this a month or so before school starts. This way you have time to talk about it with your child, make necessary charts or schedules and avoid the extra stress that could come as a result of not planning ahead.
To help, I advise asking the 5 “W” questions: Where? When? Why? What? And Who?
This is an important question to ask because not only is where you will be putting pencils, paper and other necessary school supplies, but it will also be the place your child will be spending a great deal of time. So this place needs to fit your child’s needs and learning styles.
I have three beautiful children who have different needs and learning styles. One likes to study at the kitchen island where it is full of action, another needs quiet to fully focus and learn. And Elizabeth, our child with special needs, needs a large workspace to accommodate her wipe off board as she is a strong visual learner. By knowing your child, their needs and learning styles, you can set them up with an area that will help them best succeed. For more information on learning styles go to: https://learning-styles-online.com/overview/
Think about what time of day works best for your child and your family and make that your homework time. Try your best to stick with it. Even if your child doesn’t have official homework on a given day, using that time to clean out a folder, do some extra reading or simply organizing a project will let your child know that the time is used for its purpose each day. For us, right after dinner is the best time.
Having a discussion about the importance of this homework time will make them better apt to be willing participants. The why’s can be tailor made to your child. For mine, the why is the decreased anxiety they have when they stay organized! As well as the idea of some nice free time when done. If your child has special needs, this is a great time to use charts, wipe off board or other alternatives to help with the discussion.
Plan with your child what they should and should not bring to the homework spot. For my son, he leaves his phone in the kitchen during homework time, for Elizabeth, she needs to make sure to bring the wipe off board and markers. Make your list of do and don’t items and post it near the site. Trust me, this will save many a future discussion!
t is important to clarify when you will be helping your child versus when they need to do the work independently. When my son was younger wanted someone to “sit” with him while he did his work. That was not always easily done. So plan when you will sit with, review or help you child with homework. I found a timer helped me to let my children know how long to work on a problem or assignment before
ONE LAST THOUGHT:
Everyone has their own learning style and way they stay organized. Something I have learned in my life is that I cannot make my child have my learning style nor can I make them organize their work “just the way I do” But I can guide them and teach them as they grow, helping them find a successful “their way.”