Increasing Motivation to do Homework

Do your children get their homework done with little or no input from you? If so, consider yourself fortunate! On the other hand, if your children struggle to get their homework done, you may find yourself more involved.

Your role is to assist your child in establishing a good place to do homework and good conditions for working. For example, you might improve the conditions by giving them something to munch on while they are working like hummus and crackers, carrot sticks or strawberries.

How Involved Should You Be in Homework?

Let your child be in charge of requesting your help if needed. Establish times when you are available to help like from 3:00 – 5:00 and 7:00 – 8:00. If you don’t set boundaries, you may find yourself overwhelmed by things like trying to prepare dinner while also helping with homework.

In their book Smart Parenting for Smart Kids, Kennedy-Moore and Lowenthal write "Parents who are actively involved with their children’s homework every night, or who check over their children’s work before they turn it in, are establishing a dangerous pattern. First, they’re creating confusion about whose responsibility the homework really is. Second, they’re cutting off essential feedback that teachers need about what children do or don’t understand on their own. Third, they’re unwittingly criticizing their children’s abilities, implying that what their kids can do alone isn’t good enough to be seen in public. Parents who correct their children’s homework are trying to be helpful, but they’re unintentionally communicating to their children that mistakes are intolerable and must be hidden. This can be particularly harmful for perfectionistic children."

One mom realized she was establishing a dangerous pattern by checking over her daughter’s math homework every night.

(finish reading the article on Priceless Parenting)

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