When parents help their children with homework, it helps to boost their progress in the classroom. As Fahim Imam-Sadeque explains, though, you can actually negatively impact your children’s studies if you employ the wrong strategies.
Many parents are tempted to do their children’s homework for them or give too much input. This, however, can lead to poor study habits that will harm your child’s educational future when they should be driving the studying on their own.
Without the proper guidance, it can be challenging for parents to know what they should do. Here are five tips parents can follow to help their children with homework.
1. Get Involved
Your child’s education requires your involvement and your interest. When parents become involved in their children’s lives at home and in school, they often succeed in the classroom.
Children whose parents are more involved in their schooling are often more motivated and engaged in the work in and out of school. For parents, this could include talking about what they’re learning in school and sitting down with them to go over homework.
At the same time, you don’t want to get too involved that you’re doing all the work for them.
2. Approach It as Learning
Homework has the word “work” in it, of course, but parents should help their children not approach it that way. Instead, help them see homework as an opportunity to learn rather than as work that they need to finish.
Instead of focusing on what they need to do to finish the task, help your children recognise the skills they are using and learning as they complete their homework. This will allow children to look at assignments as potentially fun activities rather than just something they’re forced to do after school.
3. Praise Them
Children respond well when they’re told they’re doing a good job. So, don’t just be present for your children’s homework; praise them when they accomplish something.
If your child is stuck when they’re completing their homework, guide them in a way that also empowers them. An excellent strategy is to ask them questions about the subject matter. As they begin to answer questions correctly — and maybe even teach you a thing or two — they’ll gain more confidence to solve the problem.
And as they solve more problems, they’ll advance through the homework better. So, encourage your children to overcome obstacles by working through them, not avoiding them.
4. Create a Plan
An effective way to help your children with their homework is to create a plan for it. When children don’t understand what they’re being asked to do, it’s easy to become frustrated and “throw in the towel.”
Creating a plan for homework helps them fully understand what they’re supposed to be doing and how they’re supposed to be doing it.
Fahim Imam-Sadeque explains that this plan can include reading the assignment thoroughly before starting and having your children repeat the instructions back to you.
Help them create a set time period for each task in the overall assignment to keep them on track. Then, set it as a challenge for them to complete.
5. Set Aside Time
Homework should be a part of the daily routine. Too often, parents push children off to the side when it’s time for homework, forcing them to do it on their own, in their rooms, or on a cleaned-off section of the table.
Parents can help their children with homework by dedicating family time to it. Create a dedicated space for homework, a dedicated environment, and ample time to do it.
When this type of arrangement is made, homework can be more meaningful and accomplished more effectively, leaving time for the children to enjoy their nights before bed.
About Fahim Imam-Sadeque
Fahim Imam-Sadeque is a business development professional with proven experience in the asset management industry. He has a Bachelor of Science in Actuarial Science from the City University of London and is a Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries. Fahim’s top skills include asset management, hedge funds, investment management, sales, and consultant & client relationship management.