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Texas ISD School Guide
Texas ISD School Guide

Articles for Teachers

Homework Help
By:Stuart Ackerman

It is simple to search the internet for homework help tips. Most tips, though somewhat helpful, assume that your child is willing to sit down and simply get to work. Most homework ideas revolve around the ideas that your child needs an uncluttered, quiet space that is well lit and comfortable. Unfortunately, distractions and a disorganized room may not be the real problems.

Many parents have taken the initiative to create wonderfully comfortable environments for their children in order to do their homework. Then, after the novelty wears off, those old habits of homework avoidance kick in again.

Consider this. Your child may have the proper environment to do his/her homework in, but he/she may be doing homework at the wrong time!

Quite often, kids are exposed to after school soccer, dance, music, karate, and other extra-curricular activities. Students attend these activities from right after school to the mid-evening hours. So, when does homework fit in to the timetable? Does your child squeeze homework in between dinner and his or her evening activities? Does he/she do homework right away? Or is homework the ultimate evil that has to be tackled before bedtime?

Every child is different! They have different internal clocks. When is your child's down time? Is it at 4:00, right after school, when you expect him/her to do homework because swimming lessons start after dinner? Or does your child go straight to piano after school, come home for dinner, and start homework at 7:30 when she is exhausted?

You know your child best!

Find out your child's down time and make sure that this isn't when he/she is doing homework. Try to schedule after school activities around your child's high and low times. For example, assume you bring your son home, give him a quick dinner, and rush off to karate lessons. He finally gets home at 7:30 or 8:00, exhausted (after using up all of his energy kicking and punching) and ready to relax. But, he's now expected to do his geometry homework, or edit his report. This won't work.

In this case, you should determine your son's high and low energy times. Perhaps he has an abundance of energy between 4:00-6:00. If so, then this is definitely the time when he should do his homework. Or maybe he has tons of energy at 7:30, then maybe looking for a karate class that begins at 4:30 may be a better choice.

If homework is a priority for your family, you should consider optimizing the quality of time spent doing it. Sit down with your child; agree on an ideal and consistent time for homework, then try to plan other extra-curricular activities.

Stuart Ackerman

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