How to Help Your Child Work Independently on Homework

by Patrice on July 11, 2011 · 0 comments

in Homework Help

Homework Help

When getting the student to do his homework becomes a daily battle, maybe it’s not the homework. Maybe the problem is that the youngster doesn’t feel comfortable enough to work independently. Children are a lot like adults in that some work well independently while others work best in groups. The single mom can take a lot of stress out of the homework session once she identifies how her child works best.

Most kids don’t even start to develop the skills to work independently until they reach the second grade age. It takes some children longer to develop the skill of being able to work on their own. Having mom or even a sibling that they can count on to keep them focused on their assignments in the same room is often enough to get the homework completed without a problem.

If your child needs the support of your presence while he is doing his homework, take advantage of the opportunity and relax if you can. Bring a book, newspaper or magazine to the table and catch up on your reading while the homework is being done.

Don’t let the child take advantage of your presence. You are there to support him, not do the homework for him. If he really is having a hard time with a problem, try to guide him into finding the answer on his own rather than giving him the answer. If he asks you to verify his answer after every problem, suggest that you will go over the work when it is complete.

Once the child gets into the habit of doing the homework assignments every day without argument, wean yourself from the area slowly, but don’t abandon him completely. Sometimes a child really needs help understanding the homework problem and will get frustrated if he spends a lot of time working on it without finding the solution. Let him know that it’s perfectly acceptable to skip over the problem and come back to it later, when you are available to help him.

As the child gets used to doing his homework on his own, try to give him the opportunity to focus on the job at hand without distraction. Turn off the TV and ask the siblings to leave him in peace. Some children work better with low music in the background, while others find it distracting.

Don’t expect miracles. Homework isn’t supposed to be a fun activity. There will still be complaints about having to do homework when the sun is shining and all the neighborhood kids are playing outside. Once the child realizes that he can work independently on his homework, one of his excuses for not doing it will be eliminated.

About Patrice

Patrice Campbell is a freelance writer working from the Denver area. Campbell started her writing career in the 1980’s, working for several Wisconsin local papers as a news, human interest and features writer, as well as a photographer.

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