High school is just around the corner and the graduating class of 20,000 – 30,000 fresh-faced, feet walking across the stage of life. As they step onto the stage, parents everywhere feel the nerves of the night before rush back with the excitement of seeing the parent student parent in all his/her blue, red, black and white orthodox attire step onto the stage to accept the diploma as the first graduating student II.
These parents will wave at the crowd of parents joylessly crowding the sidewalks to see the walking graduates walk by; hey, they are almost finished! Something tells me that as they stand there waiting for their child to step onto the stage, they are thinking how much more their children still have to do.
For many of you, this article will be all about your child and how to get them to do their homework so they can walk across proudly and easily. Here are five tips for getting your child to do their homework easily.
1. Tell Him/Her Before They Start…OK, so we all know this is easier said than done. Being very organized, parents are always looking for ways to get their child to do what they are supposed to do without making their day sometime. For example, to get the child to clean his/her room, the parents only get there when something needs cleaned. The child may do the chore; if not, then the parents come into the room with a broom. Guess what happened? They told their child before they could proceed with a reason. So, if a child says something that has to be done, then parents should listen or, at least show some motivation on the child’s part. Sit the child down and get him/her to tell his/herself as clearly as possible why he/she should or should not be doing a particular (or another) task.
2. Location is Important…OK, so back onto the subject of homework. Many people look for a time when a child can seem willing to stay put in the middle of a task without disruption and shipping booster stuff back to the dying room next door. For example, the homework is in the living room addressing a math assignment with a deadline in the 6th grade. The parent can/may decide to wait after dinner to make it to dinner. The child is sitting at the computer and gets up and does their homework. They expect to be on the porch during dinner time to see their friends coming over. Not to worry; just remember the location of the location the child will be doing their work – that is important. The academic computer on the first floor of his/her bedroom/PG-13 level at the school. The middle of the living room, where the child can move to at any time if necessary. The basement, the garage or even a stable away from the house but out of sight and mind. These suggestions are simple to implement and will help to keep your child (obviously) awake and make him/her show up for the school.
3. Show Interest…Even though an assignment or topic needs the child to have all their supplies, they can’t just say, “I’m good for this assignment,” and leave. Sometimes children need to see the parent truly excited about their initial assignment to show how much they want it. So, if you have not seen the assignment in a week, get involved, get curious and ask them about the assignment. I’m sure that you will spark a positive attitude from the child if you talk about it during the week, as they will try to find some way to prove that they are friendly and willing to do the assignment during the week.
4. Be Patient…And Let the Child Talk…A parent does not have to know exactly how that child is thinking or what they might be thinking but they actually have an important stake in the decision making process. A child should be allowed to talk to the parent about their assignments and then the parent should say, “I don’t know if we can do that, but I want you to do it, just to see.” (I have heard this approach work 100% of the time). When the child takes part in developing an assignment or topic, there is an opportunity for the child to volunteer what they are willing to do. It is better that a child discover this community of other children and then volunteer the time and effort to get involved and see it through.
5. Stick to the Process…To avoid the chance of second guessing the assignments has already been completed or has not been completed altogether. Asking another child to do the assignment on behalf of the child may be a better option but that is something only the parent can do. If this is the issue, just stick to the process.