How to incorporate homework fun into your kid's study time
Read on for helpful pointers on how to make homework fun for your kids.
Most parents might find it a hassle to help their kids with the much disliked “homework time.” First off, we might not even be in touch with the syllabus — so can we really help?
Well, think of it this way — your kids dread it more than you because they’d rather have play time than homework time! Makes sense, right?
Nonetheless, study time — which includes doing homework — is a part of your kid’s school life, whether they like it or not. Here are a few do’s and don’ts to remember:
Never ever allow homework to be completed in front of the idiot box (aka your TV!) and of course do not do their homework for them. Your kids need to learn how to be self-sufficient and not to be constantly spoon-fed.
It is also helpful to give them a little treat after they complete their homework, so that they feel rewarded. Remember, your child responds better to rewards rather than to punishments.
However, don’t get into the habit of doing this, or else they won’t do anything unless they get something for it. Whenever possible, you should sit by your kid while they are pencilling in their answers, and help and advise them if needed.
Doing the above will certainly answer the need for basic ‘ground rules’ but how does one actually make homework fun for your child? We share with you some tips on the next page.
The basics — Getting started in making homework fun for your kid
It’s good to develop good homework habits in our children as this will most likely lead to good working ethics in the future. Your child will benefit from it in the end, so do what you can to make homework fun for him!
1. Choose a good ‘homework spot.’
Place your kid in a conducive environment where he/she can complete his/her homework. If possible, choose a bright and airy place with minimal clutter.
2. Choose a good ‘homework routine.’
Find a time that is suitable and convenient for you and your kid. Your kid may have other extra-curricular activities while you have other “non-parental” duties, so find a routine that works for the both of you.
It may also help to put a homework plan together. Kids need consistency, so find a time and stick to it.
3. If possible, start early.
You should start the homework ball rolling early in the evening.
Why? Any later and the kids might be pooped from a grueling day packed with all kids of activities that have drained their energy.
4. Relax and be understanding.
It is natural for your kid to NOT be pumped up about their homework — so don’t expect an enthused face.
Think about it: Were you ecstatic about homework time as a kid? We know we weren’t!
So don’t fret if your child seems reluctant and resists homework time. Again, try to relax and make homework fun for him/her!
5. Chunks are good.
You can split up the homework sessions into smaller chunks of time or shorter sections with a break in between.
Do this especially when you notice your kid drifting into space — that simply means you’ve lost them, attention-wise. During the breaks you can offer them a snack to help boost their energy levels.
6. Do double checks.
Get your child to do a “double check” and go through their completed homework to make sure that they did not leave anything out or make silly mistakes. It’s always a good idea to get your kids in the habit of checking their work — after all, you won’t be in the exam hall to check their work for them.
7. Impose a time limit.
Don’t let your child take forever to complete that assignment. After all, exams are timed, so he/she might as well get used to a deadline now than later.
8. Talk to your kid’s teacher.
Make an appointment with your child’s teacher so that you know how your kid is progressing in his/her classes. The teacher can also tell you where his/her strengths and weaknesses are, so that you know in what areas he/she needs help.
9. Choose a study partner.
A close friend of your kid could join in homework time and make the “chore” more bearable, if not more lively and entertaining. Having a pal around for a little banter can surely make homework fun!
Remember though to keep an eye on them to make sure that work is completed, or else their time together might be unproductive. Tell them that they can look forward to some play time after all their homework is done.
10. Be fun.
One of the simplest ways to make homework fun is to be fun! You still remember how to be fun, right? (Just kidding, we know you are a cool parent!)
Vary your ways of teaching — utilize auditory, visual and kinesthetic means. Use music, mind maps, stories, rhymes and alliteration — just be creative and explore your options.
Do you have other suggestions for making homework fun for kids? Come share them with us by leaving a comment!