Parenting Coach

Practical ideas for social, emotional and behavioral challenges

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Set the stage for homework success.

What you can do

Help your child develop a homework routine and keep it consistent. Figure out when and where she seems most comfortable attempting homework. Does she work best before playtime or after playtime? Does she get more work done sitting alone in a room or near you? Be sure to factor hunger and fatigue into her schedule.

When your child is ready to get started, go through the assignments and make sure she understands what is expected and has all the necessary materials. Break tasks down into smaller parts so they don’t seem insurmountable, and be available if your child gets stuck.

If possible, try to have your child start with something easy so she gets in a positive frame of mind. That will help tackle the rest of the work.

What you can say

“Sofia, I know how disappointed and frustrated you become when you still have homework to do after dinner. Let’s develop a routine that begins as soon as you get home from school.”

“First, you’ll have a quick, healthy snack. Next, you’ll set yourself up at the desk in my bedroom. It’s quiet in there. Plus, I’ll be right down the hall if you have a question.”

“Before you begin, we can review your assignments so you’re clear about what you need to do. If you have a big job, I can also help you decide how to break down your work into parts.”

“Since you like math best, I’d tackle that first. When that’s complete, you can take a quick break. Stretch your legs and maybe give the dog a little belly rub. Then it’s back to work. Before you know it, you’ll have your evenings free.”

Why this will help

Children, especially those who are overly dependent or who have attention issues, do better with routine and structure. Helping your child break down her assignments into manageable parts and allowing for short, built-in breaks is preferable to her constantly coming to you for help or asking you what she needs do next.

138Found this helpful
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