Homework may be stressful for kids and parents alike, and it can be especially difficult for children with learning and behavior challenges, experts say.
Parents can take steps, however, to make homework less of a burden for the entire family, said education specialist Barbara Resnick, of the Family Institute at Northwestern University in Evanston, Ill.
“Establish a routine for homework, and dedicate a set time for it to get done,” she suggested in a university news release. “Check the nightly planner with your child when they come home, and clarify assignment expectations by reading and highlighting instructions.”
Parents should also monitor the amount of time younger kids need to complete their assignments, Resnick added. If homework time seems excessive or if children clearly don’t understand their homework and need total supervision to complete it, parents should share these concerns with their child’s teacher.
“Although most parents are not formally trained as educators, the homework time spent together can be used to teach a variety of learning strategies,” said Resnick. “For instance, teach prioritization of assignments or how to break a larger assignment into more manageable pieces.”
When homework gets tough, it’s important for parents to help children remain confident and understand that learning is a process. “Acknowledge efforts that your child makes to complete an assignment, and not just the result,” Resnick said. “Remind your child that everyone makes mistakes and that nobody is perfect.”
The American Academy of Pediatrics provides more tips to help children develop good homework habits.
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