Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Help me with Homework!!!

My son this week came home with his spelling words...well 2 of the 10. He obviously thought if he only writes down two then he only has to learn 2 words. Sneeky!

Even though I am a teacher I find myself often pulling out my hair to get homework done. Often parents clash with their children when it comes to homework. There are a couple to reasons for this.

a) you are too much like your child and easily push each others buttons
b) children are constantly testing the boundaries- seeing how far they have to push to get out of doing something...
c) it is too hard or they don't have a long attention span

Here are some useful tips to try to help you  get through the homework witching hour!

1) Remain calm! Even if your inner temperature is set at explode try as best you can to bite your tongue. Leave them for a moment or two if need be. (Yes easier said then done!) Children will see how far they can push you.

2) Ensure you child and you both understand the what is required with the homework. If you are not sure ask.

4) Make sure your child is not too tired. You need to remember they have had a long day at school so adding homework on top of that day is going to a failure before they start. You may find that having some afternoon tea and a bit of TV for half an hour first will help rejuvenate them.

5) Make sure the homework is in achievable chunks. If a child sees they have a whole page of work to do this will instantly stress them out. Try starting with the hardest activity letting the child know that you are doing that and at the end they can do something they like to do- computer game?

6) See what parts of the homework you can combine. When it comes to having to write spelling words into sentences I get my son to see how many he can put into a sentence. This then reduces how many sentences he has to write. Try not to do the sentences for them and don't worry if their sentences are too basic. You can always suggest some other words to add to their sentence to make it more interesting for next time.

7) Eliminate what you know they don't need practice at. With spelling words at the beginning of the week I ask my son to spell them to me out loud and I tick which ones he gets right and these ones we don't need to learn. If he has to write them out each night I make him do it as handwriting practice.

8) Try to have no distractions, no TV. Noisy siblings. Some music in the background down low may work for some children too.

9) Be positive and keep reinforcing what they have achieved in the time you have had not emphasis what still needs to be done.

10) Negotiate with the teacher- what is really important to get done and what is less important. For those weeks where it doesn't seem like you are winning the battle just do the bare minimum.

11) One complaint about homework from parents is that it is taught differently from when they were at school or they don't understand the teacher jargon. You tube has a wealth of videos demonstrating how to do almost anything.  The website schoolatoz has a wealth of useful information. This link will take you to the teacher jargon page. You may also like to check out a free mathematic library.

All I can say is goodluck...some friends have taken the pressure completely off and have hired people to do the homework with their children. Maybe an option for some?

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