- Is your child motivated to do homework and study or do you need to ‘strongly encourage’ your child to do the work?
- Has homework time become a battleground?
I understand how difficult this can be for you once things get out of hand but DO NOT DESPAIR. In my last article Teaching Young Children To Study, I explained the importance of teaching even young children how to study so they can become independent learners at school. A key component of being an independent learner is motivation.
Here is the brief version:
STEP 1: FIND OUT WHAT THE BLOCKAGE IS
For you to be able to help your child overcome homework problems you first need to become a detective like Sherlock Holmes. The important thing to keep in mind is that there is no point forcing your child to do work that he/she is not able to do. All that will happen is that you will both get more emotional and will not be able to think clearly or work with each other effectively. There could be a variety of reasons why your child won’t get on with homework such as:
- doesn’t understand the work
- hasn’t or can’t read the instructions properly
- doesn’t know where to start
- lacks the basic skills to do the work
- hasn’t got the materials needed to complete the task
STEP 2: Break the work that needs to be done into a series of SIMPLE STEPS
Thus get your child to DO ONE STEP A TIME.
STEP 3: HAVE PATIENCE
Rome was n0t built in a day. Your goal should be to help your child get a few more skills and a bit more confidence every day. Research shows that the best way to build up good habits is to take small but regular steps. Just do as much in a sitting as you can both manage without getting tense. In the early stages it is often much more effective to do three 10-minute sessions than one 30-minute session.
Remember, if your child is not doing her/his homework effectively at the moment, then small positive changes on a regular basis is far better than no change at all.