Doing homework, kids memorize the material they study in class. The main helpers in this challenging activity are, of course, the parents. The problem is that the majority of children all over the world see homework as some kind of a torture, as their parents use the wrong motivational techniques that often include threats (Do your homework or you’re grounded!) or bribery (Do your homework and you will get an ice-cream).
There are better ways to make your kids do their homework and, most importantly, to want to do it. Here are some of them.
Make a plan
Creating a plan helps to deal with homework faster. However, younger students usually do not have necessary skills to make it on their own. Elementary school students cannot manage their time right yet. This is where you step in and help your kids plan their actions. To do it, you can discuss how much time they will need to do this or that task.
Make a deal that homework is to be done at the same time every day. Offer your kids to choose whether they will do it right after school or in the evening after dinner. Make it clear that while your children do their homework, there can be no distractions such as TV, smartphones, chatting with friends in messengers, etc. You can make sure there are no digital distractions by monitoring your kids’ devices. There is a lot of information on how to monitor child’s iPod touch, smartphone, laptop or any other gadget that your kids may have. Just look for it online.
Your kids may be against such rules at first, but eventually, they will get used to them and just sit down and do their homework when it’s time.
Check their homework
Many students worry about bringing homework with mistakes to school. The fear to get a bad grade, disappoint their teacher or get laughs from other kids is not the best motivation for children. To improve their self-esteem, pedagogues recommend parents to check their kids’ homework on a regular basis. This will free your kids of doubts that they could fail.
Let your children be alone while doing homework
When your little ones do their home assignments, they are better left alone. Being controlled too much will not only stand in the way of your kids being self-reliant but can also make them feel helpless and passive. They could acquire a psychological dependency on a grown-up, which is not a good thing.
Notice qualities instead of shortcomings
Praise your kids’ good work every time you can. The positive emotional state is critical for the desire to learn. Talking about mistakes is important, too, but you need to be careful here. Here is an example of a nice way to point out a mistake to your kid: “I’m sure that if you go through this task again, you can end up with another answer”. When you check your kids’ homework, always start with something positive, only then go to the issues.
Control your emotions
Even when you do not say anything bad, kids can see and feel non-verbal language, too, especially if it is negative. Do not let them think you are disappointed or upset with their work; this can automatically mean that you do not love them anymore to them. So, be careful here.
Many parents do not pay enough attention to the process of doing homework. Do not make the same mistakes, and you will see how fast your kids will get used to doing everything on their own.
Jana Rooheart is a blogger and online safety expert. She is devoted to making the Internet safer for kids and to warning parents about all the possible hazards of online activities.