How to Help your Child with a Homework?

It is the common known truth: small kids – small problems, big kids – big problems. Once your child enters the school you become deeply involved into the educational process. You buy all the necessary things like school bag and copybooks, prepare your child to meet new people, attend parent meetings, check whether the homework is done in proper way, communicate with teachers… The question is should you help your child with homework or you must not?

There are two totally opposite points of view: on the one hand you must cultivate independence and self-organization, on the other hand you must help your children to hit the books and develop good study habits. What to choose? DON’T help your child with homework. Do you review your daughter’s homework every night? Robinson and Harris’s data, published in The Broken Compass: Parental Involvement With Children’s Education, show that this won’t help her score higher on standardized tests. Children get used to parents’ checking and further they are unable to do it themselves. Besides, in the Middle School you probably will not have enough skills and knowledge to help your child. When you meet with teachers and principals frequently your child may feel ashamed and uneasy in the eyes of the classmates.

DO help your child with homework. However, it is not actually help in the usual sense of the word. You should not give your child instructions and directions; you should rather give hints. Here’s how to do it as it is advised by teachers.

      Plan. Make plans for you and your child, decide together what to do and when to do it, the child should be involved in the process of planning, in the nearest future it will be done solely by the child.

      Don’t do assignment instead of your child. Children are lazy and clever, they may tell you that they don’t understand something just not to do it. They wait until you are tired enough to do everything for them including homework. Do assignments earlier, write compositions and do sums, and only then advise your child what to do. If something is not clear for you, consult somebody or even make a small research in the Internet. There are many websites offering help with different kinds of assignments (not only school homework), for example Surf the World Wide Web and you’ll see that nothing is so complicated!

      Pick the right spot. Let your child choose the best place for doing homework. If you reach maximum of concentration in the silence, it does not mean that your child will be uncomfortable in the middle of a kitchen.

      Check the homework together with your child, so that she/he had opportunity to find and correct mistakes without your direct pointing at them.

To help your child with the homework or not to help is not an easy question, and it is up to you what to decide. I arrived at the conclusion that measure is treasure. Independence should not turn into permissiveness and assistance – into control.


  1. Janet W.
    June 26, 2015 / 9:46 am

    These are great tips! I know homework can be a huge struggle for some kids. It's important to stay consistent and check over it all when they're finished.

  2. Fiddlin' Dandi
    July 10, 2015 / 11:48 am

    These are some great tips–my son is always so stubborn about letting us help him with things.

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