How to “Help” with Homework


Educators have long used homework as a tool to reinforce what students are learning in class.  However, with after school activities and high academic expectations, homework can become a source of anxiety and stress for the whole family.  While students need to be the ones completing the work, there are many things parents can do to assist their children to make homework time a more positive experience for all.

  • Make sure your child has a quiet, well-lit place to do homework, but keep in mind a desk is not always the best spot for homework.  Consider alternate seating options such as a yoga ball or laying on their stomach to complete assignments.
  • Make sure all the materials your child needs, such as paper, pencils, eraser, white-out and markers are available and accessible.
  • Think about your child’s individual needs when setting a homework time.  Do they need to shoot the basketball for a few minutes after school?  Do they need a snack? Do they become tired later in the evening and can’t complete work?
  • Help your child with time management.  Make a schedule of work that needs to be completed.  Show them how to break down bigger projects into small steps that can be managed over time.  Plan time multiple days ahead of time to study for a test.
  • When your child asks for help provide guidance, but not the answers. Help them come up with creative ways to answer the questions.
  • Get up and move- breaks are okay and necessary!                                           
  • Have your child figure out what is “hard” homework and what is “easy” homework. Have your child do the hard work first so he will be most alert when facing the bigger challenges. Easy material can go fast when he gets tired.
  • Tell your child’s teacher if the work is consistently too difficult or an excessive amount of time is being spent on homework.
  • Remember, homework is your child’s responsibility! Resist the temptation of always sitting next to your child and helping with each problem.  Leave the room and let them attempt to do it on their own, even if they make a mistake.

If homework continues to be a battle consider a getting a tutor.  Tutors can help students learn the executive functioning skills crucial to completing work at home and at school.  Our experienced teachers will also take the opportunity to practice and reinforce skills taught in the classroom, add extension activities, build study skills, and develop test taking techniques to build confidence toward school and learning.   For more information on our tutoring and homework assistance services, please contact us at 804-447-4095.

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