As a parent, supervising your children to 'get their homework done', particularly if they are a reluctant learner, can be a huge stress in the household.
Teachers set homework and the responsibility for monitoring it, and providing appropriate consequences/support if homework is neglected by the student, lies with them. Also many children, particularly in primary school are overburdened by homework. Taking all this into account my stance has been one of hands off. It is the school and teacher's problem and responsibility, not the parents.
However, experience has shown me that taking a hands off approach tends to result in little effective, response from schools and teachers; students falling behind; and the lack of creation of an appropriate work ethic. Note, that I am referring to Grades 5-6 up.
So, what to do? I always say that everything begins with acceptance...so accept that you are going to need to oversee and help coordinate homework.
Develop your own rhythm depending on your child. Some children who are competent self-starters will need minimal, if any, supervision. Other children will need a consistent routine whereby homework is done in a similar environment each night.
This can be created through making a consistent time, having environmental cues such as starting homework music, laying the table with a homework cloth, setting a timer. And through behavioural chaining - which is linking activities together in a sequence. Eg. 20 minutes outside play, snack, homework, 20 minutes on a game.
What type of homework is beneficial? Well that's a whole other article. But in young children reading - read to them and with them.
Any questions on homework? Ask below or email me. Like to book a parent consultation to talk about this in more depth simple email firstname.lastname@example.org or call me on 0408533515.
Together building calm, confident and connected children.
* My aim is for these posts is meant to useful, interesting and/or inspiring. They are not designed to be used for therapy.. If you are experiencing stress please contact your GP or mental health professional.
Kim Dunn is a Child Psychologist and Founder of Positive Young Minds.