Help Your Tween Tackle Large Projects

If your tween has a large project to carry out, you can help him get it done

Teenage boy using digital tablet in laboratory
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At some point in middle school, your child will likely have to tackle a large project -- it might be a homework project or a project that she has to finish for scouts, or as part of a leadership position within another civic organization. Young entrepreneurs might decide they want to open their own lawn mowing business or tackle another money making venture. Whatever your child's commitment might be, there are ways you can help your tween tackle and finish the task.

The tips below should help your tween tackle whatever project is before her.

Mark the Calendar

Once your tween knows that a project is on the horizon, it's time to break out the calendar. Be sure you know when the project is due and establish if progress reports will also be necessary to complete. Be sure the family calendar has the date promptly marked and be sure both you and your tween also mark your individual calendars. 

Set a Time Line

Setting up a timeline is probably the most important step in breaking down a large project. You'll need to impose deadlines throughout, giving yourself wiggle room for corrections or setbacks. Be sure you know what your child's other commitments are, including extracurricular and sports activities, before you establish deadlines. A good timeline must be realistic and give your tween the time he needs to think through his project and adjust if necessary.

Access Supplies

After your timeline is established, it's time to access the materials your tween will need to conquer the project. See what supplies you already have available at home, to cut expenses. It's always a good idea to have more supplies than you need so that you'll have enough in case your child makes a mistake and has to start over again.

When you make your list be sure to jot down specifics such as dimensions, colors, or anything else that will make shopping easier.

Chart Progress

Once work has begun on the project it's important to chart your child's progress every now and then. You don't want to take over the task, but you do want to make sure your tween leaves enough time for himself to complete the project the way he wants to. Avoid last minute rushing by charting your child's progress, and show him how far he's come from the idea stage to where he is periodically throughout the project. Acknowledge when your child is half-way through, 3/4 through and finally, finished! You can even make a chart and post it where your tween can see, that could prove to be encouraging and motivating to him.

Reward Hard Work

Taking on a large project isn' t always easy to do, and your child's work should be acknowledged and rewarded. Make sure he allows himself the opportunity to enjoy being finished. Surprise him with a treat, such as a trip out for ice cream, or an extra 20 minutes at night to play his video games.

Let him know that you noticed his hardwork and determination to finish the project on time.

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