Every parent knows that great students are organized, motivated and equipped with tools and resources. Most of the time, good study and homework habits do not come naturally to children, and these habits often need to be taught. Part of a child’s intrinsic desire to do well lies within the support and guidance of parents from an early age. Establishing and maintaining an environment in your home that fosters learning is an important part of your child’s potential to gain essential knowledge and skills
Set Up a “Homework-Only” Location
Ideally, this location should be a desk or a table with a hard surface. Supplies such as paper and writing utensils should be readily available as well. Most importantly, this location should be free of any distractions. Children who are able to concentrate are also more able to fully engage in their work, which may result in efficient work and study completion.
Create a Routine
Children who do their homework according to a schedule are often times more successful than those children who lack a routine. Routines help children to stay on task, which also fosters the child’s ability to self-discipline. Choose a time that is convenient for both you and your child and stick to your schedule. Repetition and follow-through will enable your child to autonomously adhere to his or her routine.
Have Help Available
Have Help Available
When a child needs a little extra assistance, parents are often encouraged to “help children help themselves”. For example, having a dictionary nearby the homework location may be useful if a child does not understand a word. A computer or a local homework helpline number are also excellent resources to have handy. When a child is struggling or is having difficulty understanding their homework, make sure you are available as a resource as well.
Organization is highly conducive to educational success. In fact, a lack of organization can lead to missing assignments, confusion or poor grades. Help your child to get their notebooks, assignment notebooks and folders organized so that they can properly utilize them both at home and at school. Getting into the habit of writing in an assignment notebook is especially helpful for young children, and this habit will be equally significant down the road. Many parents like to check their child’s assignment notebook to help hold them accountable for the completion of their work.
When parents create an environment using the above tenants, they increase the likelihood that their children will have success in school. Most importantly, children will gain skills that will serve them well in the future and they will develop a natural motivation and love for learning.
Jennie is an Oshawa based private tutor who helps enjoying children master the fundamentals of math, English and science.