Homework helps children learn revision and routine, and such good habits should be gradually inculcated at the kindergarten and primary levels. Obviously, in most cases, it is unlikely that a child in the age bracket of 3-10 years will do their homework without any persuasion and help. Therefore, parents should get involved with children when they do their homework. But getting involved does not mean doing the kid’s homework and letting him or her be a mere spectator. Besides, such practices lead to children picking up wrong habits such as lying to the teachers about who did their homework.
So, if you are a parent struggling to strike a balance between helping your little one with their homework and ending up doing the homework all by yourself, this article is for you. Read these tips to motivate young learners to do their homework.
1. Talk, Persuade, and Participate
When you intend to help your child do his or her homework, do not simply order them to take their books and notebooks out and start reading and writing. First, talk to them about their day and what they learn at school. Know what caught/sustained their interest throughout the day. This information may also help you find a talking point to steer the conversation towards doing homework. When the child is practicing letter writing, working on math problems, writing spellings, or simply reading the text assigned for the day, you may participate to demonstrate an example. For example, when a kindergarten student is learning to write alphabets or numbers, the parent may hold the child’s hand gently but should leave it after helping him write 3-4 letters or numerals.
2. Be patient and gentle
Sometimes, children may take time to learn something new. That is why patience is the key here. Experienced preschool, KG, and primary teachers at schools in Abu Dhabi advise against showing the signs of aggression or frustration, either through words or body language. It may simply prove detrimental to your child’s psyche as s(he) might lose interest in making efforts to do the homework to the best of his or her capabilities. Besides, it is possible that they, especially the preschoolers with more impressionable minds, start associating negative experiences such as getting scolded or a parent getting irritated, with homework.
Introduce a reward system
Many parents understand rewarding a child in material terms only. Though it is one of the ways to show appreciation for a child’s efforts, rewards could be emotional and verbal too. If a child shows disdain towards homework, discuss the benefits of completing it. It could be simply a ‘very good’ that they may get from a teacher or extra 15 minutes to play the next day. In addition, hugs, back pats, pecks, and clapping to show appreciation also work well. To a child, these actions may signify that they have done something worthwhile.
Homework may help reinforce positive values such as discipline and daily practice to learn better. Therefore, instead of giving up on your kid’s homework, try the tips shared above and share the stories of change with us.