How Parents Can Respond to Children's Complaints About Homework

Parents can help children get accustomed to homework

Parents can help children get familiar with homework by addressing their complaints and questions. They can also set aside spaces in the home for children to complete assignments and determine when a child has too much homework or is simply struggling to complete assignments quickly. Learn more about what parents can do to accustom children to homework with this list.

What You Need to Know About Homework

Bored schoolboy
Bored schoolboy. Getty Images/Tomas Rodriguez/Picture Press

There’s a lot more to homework than just sitting down to get it done. Parents can use homework to impart values to their children. Parents can also deepen bonds with children by being available to help them complete homework. In fact, one might even say there’s an ABC’s of homework. Learn more about homework essentials with this list. 

How Much Homework Is Too Much?

Although the typical rule of thumb is that your child shouldn’t have more than 10 minutes of homework per grade, parents must consider other factors when exploring whether children have too much homework. For instance, it may be that your child has the right amount of homework but is a struggling learner who cannot complete it in a timely manner.

When Homework Feels Like Busywork

When you see your child pull his homework out of his bag, you might roll your eyes and think, “Really, another worksheet? Why does this teacher give such busywork?” Not all worksheets are busywork. In fact, there are valid reasons that practice sheets can be effective homework.

However, by the same token, not all homework is necessary, especially if your child has mastered the skill in question. Knowing the difference between effective homework and busywork is a must for parents.

Is Homework Really Necessary?

Whether or not homework is necessary is a hotly debated topic amongst parents and teachers alike. Most people fall squarely into one camp or the other, but a few take a more cautious approach.

Maybe the more appropriate question isn’t whether homework is necessary, but whether it’s being assigned and what children accomplish by doing it. The NEA has stated that homework should be given for one of three purposes: practice, preparation or extension.

Getting Children Homework Help Online

Many parents lack the time or the know-how to help children with homework. When you find that you’re no longer up to helping your child with math, language arts or other subjects, you may want to turn to the Internet for assistance. Not all sites provide valid information or are safe for children to use. It’s important to visit reputable sites, including Discovery Education, National Geographic and NASA.

How Parents Are Expected to Help With Homework

Kids know their teachers expect them to do their homework carefully and hand it in on time, but parents don’t always know that teachers have expectations for them regarding homework.  The Top 5 Things Parents Can Do to Help With Homework lists some of these expectations, such as that parents should read the homework policy carefully and check children’s finished assignments.

Is a Busy Schedule Ever an Excuse Not to Do Homework?

Whenever you pair the word “excuse” with the word “homework,” you’re treading on shaky ground. An excuse is typically a quick reason why something didn’t get done, not a fully-reasoned explanation. Of course, there are some excuses that are valid but, for the most part, participating in extracurricular activities is one of the top homework excuses that won’t usually work with teachers.

Instilling Good Homework Habits Into Children

Knowing that you want your child to view homework differently than you did is a great way to begin instilling good homework habits into children. Showing your child that homework is important to you by working alongside her and setting aside a time and place to do homework are also among some of the best homework habits to develop.

The Kitchen May Not Be the Best Place to Do Homework

It’s not where you set up your child’s homework space that matters. It's making that space his own. So, if your kitchen table isn’t working for homework anymore, find a quiet space in the home you can reserve for your child to do his homework. He can help you fill it with all the supplies he may need.

Designing a Space for Children to Study

So, the kitchen table didn’t work for homework and the next place you tried didn’t seem quite right either. Maybe it’s time to see what other readers have to say about setting up a homework space and heed their advice.

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