Homework Hints

By Lynn Murtagh-Hartje

A common recommendation for making sure homework gets done is to create an environment conducive to your child's study.

  • Designate one-hour family study time.
  • Turn off T.V. and music.
  • Limit phone conversations to 3 min. or ask if the call can be returned after study hour.
  • Give pre-school children quiet time or read to them.
  • Adults can work on home projects at the same time the students are doing their homework.
  • Create a homework space that fits your child's physical size, has good lighting and is free of distractions.
  • Children in kindergarten through 3rd. grade can either read homework instructions themselves or listen as they are read to them.  They can be invited to ask questions to see if they understand what is to be done.  When questions have been answered, ask your child how they plan to do the work.
  • (What will he/she do first, second, etc.?)  Finally, ask your child how much time he thinks he needs to complete the assignment.

Fourth, fifth and sixth graders can practice skill #8 ÷ accomplishing a task when they complete their homework.  Let them set up their own place of study.  It might include a reading lamp, calendar for keeping rack of assignments, a compass, and construction paper.

Encourage them to discover how they work best and the time for study that works best for them.

By 7th, 8th and 9th grade, students should be ready to practice skill #11 ÷ Organizing time, space, people and things.  Keep in mind that many children grapple with the abstract concept of time management well into their high school years.  Encourage your older students to practice the management of heir homework assignments and projects by setting goals that involve all of these steps.

1.      Ask myself "What do I need to do?"

2.      2. Make a list of what needs to be done and when.

3.      Prioritize:  Rank the items on your list from the least important to the most important.

4.      Ask yourself:  What do I need to do to accomplish this goal?

5.      Fill in a calendar with tasks that need to be done.

6.      Periodically evaluate progress on long-term projects.

Teach older children about three pitfalls in organizing time:  Procrastination, Escaping (Daydreaming or doing something else you feel more like doing) and Deception (Telling yourself or others that you ╬ran out of time'; when you really failed to check the time or the amount of work that needed to be done.)

Reproduction of this article in whole or in part allowed with proper credit given to:

Discipline With Purpose, Inc.
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Reedsville, PA 17084
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