Articles for parents

Five productive ways for parents to help their children with homework

Sep 2019

Homework is a crucial component in any child’s learning process. It helps to:

  • Encourage children to work independently
  • Encourage children to take responsibility for their own work
  • Consolidate their learning in class
  • Raise the level of achievement
  • Prepare children for future class work
  • Help children learn to organise and plan their time

These benefits are only made possible if there is a strong partnership between home and school. This is because parents can play a significant role in their children’s learning; influencing their educational success and attitude towards learning. When parents involve themselves in the education process of their children, such as supporting their children with school work, the outcome is usually more positive for the child.

Here are five productive ways to help your child with their homework:

1. Be supportive
We learn from our mistakes. Rather than simply giving them the answers, it’s more beneficial to offer support by guiding them through their work. You can do this by helping to interpret assignment instructions and reviewing completed work. Providing them with the opportunity to figure out the answers for themselves helps to develop their problem-solving skills and gives them the confidence to persevere. The more opportunities they are given to figure out the answers on their own, the more independent they become and the less they will rely on your assistance.

2. Establish a study routine
Some children prefer to do homework straight after school, whereas others have after school commitments or prefer to ‘unwind’ first. Establish a suitable time and place for completing homework, ideally somewhere with no interruptions and when distractions are at a minimum. Encourage them to they stick to this routine, as making study a consistent part of their daily lives is a great way to develop healthy homework habits.

3. Strike a balance between schoolwork and leisure
All children need leisure time, and so it’s essential to find a balance between studying and engaging in activities that interest them outside of their school curriculum. Pinpoint how much homework they are given and determine how much time should be allocated to completing homework. Ensure that the recommended time is not exceeded so that they get it done efficiently and homework doesn’t become a daunting experience.

4. Find ways to make homework engaging
One way to involve children in their extended learning is to apply their school work to the real world. Discuss with them the ways in which the material they are learning applies outside the classroom; providing specific examples of how it relates to current affairs and how it might link to some of their interests.

5. Utilise additional resources and support
Consider additional outside support from another source:

  • Does the school offer a homework club?
  • Are there any recommended textbooks or online resources that they need help accessing?
  • Is their homework extensive and at a level you feel you are not able to confidently support yourself?
  • Is your child regularly struggling with a subject, making little progress or becoming anxious?

Although Kumon Study Centres are not designed for students to complete and review their school homework, our maths and English programmes help children to think for themselves and develop strong problem-solving skills; developing them into independent and confident learners. Students are provided with daily worksheets to complete in order to develop their abilities and fundamental study skills. Combined with their schoolwork, they are equipped with the tools they need to succeed academically.