Tips for helping your child with their homework

24 January, 2012

Doing their homework won’t actually take that long if children are disciplined.

At some point in their primary school education, children will probably find themselves struggling with their homework. In such cases, most parents aim to provide their children with the right tools to help them find the correct answers by themselves.

The biggest favour you could do for your children at this young age is to equip them with the knowledge and resources to help them become independent thinkers in the future.

If your child is experiencing problems with their school work, there are a few things which parents can do to help them out. However, these techniques are designed to help the child come to the conclusion on their own, rather than simply telling them the correct answer.

These techniques will hopefully help them to learn how to become more resourceful and independent, and will also provide them with self-confidence once they discover that they are able to do their homework without any external help.

The following tips will help your child to both concentrate and perform better when doing their homework;

Same time, same place: a lack of routine is detrimental for a child’s school performance. The Prince’s Trust Youth Index 2012 revealed that children raised in a structured routine perform better academically and enjoy increased wellbeing generally. By getting used to keeping a space in their diaries to do their homework, your children will make that time part of their daily routine.

There is no need to put pressure on them. Whenever they are relaxed, rather than hungry/tired, it might be a good idea to sit them down and encourage them to get their homework done with no distractions around. Once they get used to that structure, they will discover that doing their work doesn’t actually take that long if they are disciplined.

Sources of information: a common problem that children might experience when doing their homework is failing to realise where to find the information they need. Therefore, nudge your child in the direction of different tools such as dictionaries, the internet or encyclopaedias. By providing them with the right tools and resources initially, they will be able to help themselves in the future.

Patience and examples: whenever they cannot understand a specific problem, it is essential to sit down with them and explain to them HOW to find the solution they are looking for – do not simply give it to them as this will essentially be counter-productive. It is always useful to walk them through a similar example so they are able to apply the same techniques in a different context.