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Mistakes Parents Make When Helping with Their Child’s Homework

Students often list homework on top of the banes of their academic life. Though homework may seem like a chore and burden, there are some benefits of homework that also help students. In essence, homework is just supplementary to help students retain the lessons they learned in school. This is why teachers often give students homework after lessons wrap up or before they start the lesson to prepare them for what’s to come in relation to the previous lesson. Homework, when done right and all things considered, can help students develop excellent work habits and improve other useful life skills and values such as good time management, discipline, and memory development.

Homework, ideally, shouldn’t be difficult for the students to complete on their own. This is why it’s encouraged for students to finish them on their own. However, that isn’t always the case. There are just some homework that can be difficult for students to handle especially in subjects they struggle with such as in Math or Science. When the student shows the first signs of struggling with their homework, the first person they can enlist to help them are their parents. As parents also are encouraged to become involved in their child’s studies, there are also some mistakes they should avoid when planning to help their child with their homework.

In this article, we’ll list down some of the common mistakes parents make in order to avoid them in the future.

1. Complaining about the amount of homework

They say that children learn best through imitation. If this is the case, then parents who constantly complain about the amount of homework their child has to do would only reinforce the notion that students should and could also do the same. When parents complain about it all the time, children can pick it up and will also be prone to complaining just as much as their parents or even more so.

It’s best for parents to create a schedule for their children according to the importance of the homework in order to avoid overwhelming the child. By doing this, the daunting number of homework that needs to be done wouldn’t be as gargantuan and will help the student see that they can also finish their homework on time. Again, teachers wouldn’t give homework to students if they know they can’t handle or answer it. If this is the case, then the point of homework being practice and supplementary is lost.

However, if the parent sees that the amount of homework is beyond what the child can handle, they can discuss this with the teachers or the school. After all, if all subjects give homework at the same time, that’s bound to get exhausting for the child, especially if they have after-school activities.

2. Doing the homework themselves

There are many cases where parents are guilty of this. It’s true that parents want their child to get better scores and homework can be a part of getting those. However, this wouldn’t help the child at all. Helping the child with their homework is not the same as doing their homework for them. Remember what the purpose of homework is. It’s not for the parents but for the students. They wouldn’t be able to practice what they have learned or learn to apply any of it. Additionally, this also enables them to remain stagnant and not develop a strong work ethic or other disciplines that are important if they want to succeed in the future.

Instead of doing the homework for them, parents can help through encouragement and offering assistance whenever they need it. Let them do their homework of their own but parents should still participate in making sure they don’t make any mistakes or miss anything.

3. Answering homework anywhere

It’s important for the child to have their own workspace, somewhere they can’t be interrupted, and peaceful for them to focus on the task. It should be a fixed space, without any distractions. This means that doing their homework just anywhere in the house like the dining room or the living room isn’t always ideal. It also helps that the workspace is already ready for them, meaning what they need or supplies are within reach. They wouldn’t have any reason to roam around the house looking for this and that and focus on their homework.

4. Argue about homework

The last thing the child needs when doing their homework is an argument. Many parents may act like drill sergeants and ask them to do their homework faster or constantly ask them why they are slow or anxious in making their homework. This isn’t helpful. Don’t argue with the child when trying to help them. Homework should be done in an open, approachable place that offers then peace and quiet. School is already tiring enough as it is, it’s not fair to make the time they put for their homework stressful as well.

5. Think homework gives new knowledge

As mentioned before, some teachers give homework to help students retain what they have learned from the previous lessons. This means it can be used as reinforcement and a means for students to apply their knowledge. When students use homework to practice what they learned, they will have more chances to master the lesson. Homework isn’t just to get new knowledge. Additionally, it also helps parents who are helping their child or the teachers who are checking the homework if the child is developing their mastery n the lesson or topic or if they are struggling in it.

6. Ignore the child when they’re asking for support

The first step in helping the child with their homework is actually helping them with their homework. When the child requires help for a certain topic or lesson they struggle with or find difficult, parents should be there to provide support and assistance. Don’t just ignore them and tell them to work it out on their own when they are already asking for help. There is a reason they are asking for help. Listen to the child and try to help them in any way parents can. If the parent can’t offer help for a certain subject or topic they also aren’t familiar with, they can consider a home tutor for their child to help assist them with their homework and for extra lessons as well.

7. Inconsistency

Repetition and routine can help the child when they are doing their homework. It helps them stay on top of their schedule without dallying and risking finishing their homework late or not finishing it at all. Parents should encourage their children to set a schedule for their homework and make sure they follow this schedule. Doing homework regularly at the same time consistently will help the student get into the homework and will focus more on the task at hand.

8. Overburden the child

As mentioned before, school can already be stressful for the child. With homework and after-school activities, students’ time after school can be further divided. If parents want to help their children with their homework and help ensure they remain healthy physically and mentally, they should take into consideration the amount of time the student spends in each and every activity they participate in. If parents continue to push their children for more extra-curricular activities, they may be too tired to do their homework. Remember that children can absorb more knowledge when they are well-rested. Ask the child which activities they want to pursue and encourage them to rest and do other things not relating to academics. This gives them break times to help prepare their mind and body for their lessons.

9. Control how they do their homework

Don’t immediately step in and take over how the child does their homework, even when they are visibly already having trouble. Wait for them to actively ask for help. It can be a trivial thing but it can take a blow at their self-esteem. When parents control how they do their homework, they are repressing the student’s critical thinking development to come up with methods to deal with their difficulties. Additionally, they may also feel down and feel bad about themselves when parents quickly step in. Give them time to figure out their struggles however, parents can also ask the child about their lessons and what they find difficult so they can find ways to encourage them and lead them in the right direction. Parents want their children to believe in their own capabilities and they wouldn’t develop that if they don’t allow the child to learn on their own or immediately step in at the first signs of struggle.

Conclusion

Homework may often seem like more burdens put on students but that’s not the case at all. They are meant to help enrich students’ knowledge and practice lessons to ensure mastery of the topic. As parents, it’s also important to be involved in their children’s academic life. One way to do that is to help their children with their homework and prepare them for their next day in school. Additionally, they can also help by providing a peaceful setting for students to do their homework and help them stay consistent in doing them.

Carelle

Carelle

Carelle is a teacher who has been through the ups and downs of the teacher and learner life. She wishes for every learner to gain educational satisfaction that will help embody the people they want to be in the future.

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