Homework Hacks: Ways to Make Homework Easier
Students excel in their learning when they receive the necessary support and resources, coupled with strong motivation and habits. Parents play a pivotal role in their children’s academic achievements and can significantly enhance their learning experience by getting involved in their homework.
Showing genuine interest in your child’s homework, offering assistance when required, providing extra support, and demonstrating organisational skills and time management all contribute significantly to your child's academic success. Homework shouldn't be viewed as a burden or something the family dreads.
Promoting a positive attitude towards homework and actively participating as a parent can transform this daily task into an enjoyable and rewarding experience. This blog explores effective tips to make homework less stressful and more beneficial for the entire family.
Connect with the Teachers
At the start of the school year, make an effort to establish a connection with your child’s teachers. Set up a communication channel that allows you to regularly check in with the teacher and discuss any questions or concerns either of you may have. This proactive approach will enable you to grasp the weekly homework workload and its deadlines. It's important to recognise that not all homework assignments are of equal importance. You should understand the priorities and identify the specific subjects or tasks that require your child's focus.
For instance, if the class has weekly spelling tests on Fridays, prioritising spelling practice every week becomes crucial. On the other hand, reading assignments might offer more flexibility, especially if book reports are only due once a month. Familiarise yourself with the subjects in which your child excels and those where they struggle. By doing so, you can guide your child to allocate more time to homework tasks in the areas where improvement is needed.
Create a Distraction-free Study Space
Make sure their study area is well-illuminated and equipped with all the necessary resources for productive learning. Keep an abundance of stationery within reach, ensure their devices are fully charged, and have everything readily available to avoid interruptions during homework sessions. Allocating a specific space for homework and study can serve as a motivation for children, especially if you can personalise it according to their preferences.
Consider adding elements like a whiteboard with vibrant pens for brainstorming, a charming lamp featuring their favourite character, adorable stationery, or other personalised items to make the space engaging and conducive to learning.
Schedule Homework Time
Establishing a homework routine is arguably the most effective strategy to ensure a successful and stress-free homework experience. A regular homework schedule establishes clear guidelines regarding when homework should be completed, aligning it with other family obligations and extracurricular activities. Plan homework sessions for times when you or another family member can offer support or supervision to your child (if necessary) and when there are no conflicting commitments such as after-school tuition or sports activities.
This routine could involve activities like practising spelling words while preparing dinner, engaging in educational games after breakfast (such as NumberWorks’nWords’ Steve Storm), reviewing times tables during car journeys, tackling homework assignments at the same time each day, or reading before bedtime every night. Keep in mind that what works for one family may not work for another. However, establishing a consistent routine and clear expectations will help instil positive homework habits and minimise conflicts related to completing homework.
Give Praise and Rewards
Positive reinforcement and praise serve as powerful motivators for both children and adults. Praise plays a crucial role in promoting positive behaviour, as it encourages children to repeat good actions, knowing they will be acknowledged and rewarded for their efforts. Encouraging your child to aim for excellence in their schoolwork and homework helps them understand the value and purpose of their hard work. Rewards can also act as an effective motivator, encouraging good behaviour and accomplishments.
Let your child know that you are there to support them and take an active interest in their academic pursuits. Inquire about tests, assignments, and projects, offer favourable ideas, and be available to answer questions and address their concerns. This active involvement demonstrates your support and encouragement, fostering a positive learning environment for your child.
Encourage Critical Thinking
Homework goes beyond mere memorisation of facts and figures; it involves grasping concepts and honing critical thinking skills. Motivate your child to delve deeper into the subjects they're studying. Pose open-ended questions that encourage them to analyse, evaluate, and articulate their responses. This approach not only enriches their comprehension but also bolsters their confidence in approaching complex assignments.
While offering assistance is essential, nurturing independence holds equal significance. Educate your child on breaking tasks into smaller, achievable steps. Offer guidance on homework planning, goal setting, and efficient time management. By enabling them to handle their assignments independently, you're imparting vital life skills that will prove invaluable in their future endeavours.
Make it a Family Affair
Transform homework time into a family bonding experience. Foster a peaceful atmosphere where everyone in the household is engrossed in their quiet pursuits. This collective dedication to focused work can inspire your child to concentrate effectively and complete homework tasks more efficiently. Additionally, it establishes a positive precedent, illustrating to them the significance of commitment and diligence.
In the current digital era, a plethora of educational resources is accessible online. Explore educational apps, websites, and online tutorials that correspond with your child's curriculum. These interactive tools can render learning enjoyable and dynamic, assisting your child in comprehending challenging concepts with greater ease. It's crucial, however, to maintain a balanced and monitored screen time to preserve a healthy routine.
Recognise your child's achievements, regardless of how minor they may appear. Commend their victories, whether it's mastering a spelling test, solving a challenging maths problem, or completing a research project. Positive feedback enhances their confidence and inspires them to strive for more. Consider implementing a reward system where completing homework tasks on schedule earns special privileges or treats. This positive reinforcement fosters a favourable attitude toward homework.
By incorporating these additional homework strategies into your routine, you can transform homework from a daunting task into a gratifying learning experience. Keep in mind that every child is unique, so feel free to adjust these techniques to suit your child's specific needs and preferences. With patience, encouragement, and a touch of creativity, you can transform homework time into a period of growth, learning, and family closeness.
Get Additional Support if Needed
If your child is facing challenges with their homework, lacks confidence, or struggles to keep up with their peers, seeking external assistance can be beneficial. While maintaining open communication with your child’s teacher and showing an active interest in their homework and learning can enhance their school performance, tutoring can provide additional support if concerns persist.
At NumberWorks’nWords, we offer complimentary assessments in Maths and English. These assessments identify gaps and weaknesses in each child’s skills, determining their current proficiency level. Based on the results, we provide personalised tutoring tailored to each child’s learning needs. Whether your child needs extra help to catch up or requires an additional challenge because they are advancing their peers, our Maths and English tutoring programs accommodate diverse learning paces.
Managing homework doesn’t have to be stressful, and there are effective strategies to simplify the process. If you’re considering Maths and English tutoring for your child, get in touch with your local centre or book a free assessment today.