Homework—How Parents Can Help Their Students at Home
· Set up a study area that is well lit and quiet. Keep an adequate number of supplies available: pens, pencils, a pencil sharpener, a calculator, paper, ruler, scissors, tape, and a stapler.
· Schedule a daily homework time period—the earlier the better to avoid last-minute dilemmas. To keep students working in this daily routine and to prevent the potential for homework evasion in favor of leisure activities, the student could spend this time reading if he or she does not have written homework assignments. State that you expect homework to be completed whether you are home or not.
· Encourage the student to work independently to help the student to develop creative problem-solving skills and personal responsibility. Assist the student in breaking down the assignments into manageable steps.
· Motivate your student with praise on an ongoing basis to encourage the student to do the best work possible and to let the student know that you noticed the student's efforts.
· Check to see that your student is writing down assignments in the student's student planner. You may also want to post important assignment deadlines and upcoming quizzes and tests on your family calendar. Check for homework assignments on the student’s teacher’s web page. (I post my students’ daily assignments on my Canvas calendar.)
· Find out which books your student is reading in the student's classes. You may want to read these selections as well to increase the student’s comprehension opportunities through further discussion at home. This could also build another connection between you and your student.
· Before a student studies for a test, find out exactly what the test will cover and organize the study materials. Schedule at-home study time appointments as far in advance as possible so that the student can prepare for the test in small increments rather than cramming for the test at the last minute.
· In the days leading up to a test, students should write important information on index cards for review prior to the test. They should also review any textbook study questions, study guides, or quizzes. Parents can also assist in this review process.
· Provide your student with incentives for good work. For instance, each thoroughly completed assignment could earn the child one reward point and provide the child with an extra privilege after each set of five reward points. Some examples may include a special activity, a visit from a friend, or additional TV, telephone, I-pod, video game, or computer time.
· On the other hand, if the student is not completing the designated assignments, there should be consequences for these choices, which may include the loss of a previously established privilege.
· Contact the student’s teacher at the first sign of a concern or problem.
· Ask your student about the student's assignments and continue to encourage the student in the student's efforts!!