By doing homework, kids learn how to:
It also helps them develop a sense of responsibility, pride in a job well done, and a work ethic that will benefit them well beyond the classroom.
Parents can give kids lots of homework help, primarily by making homework a priority and helping them develop good study habits.
The kitchen or dining room table is a popular workspace for younger children; they may feel more comfortable being near you, and you can provide encouragement and assistance. Older kids might prefer to retreat to their rooms, but check in periodically and review the homework when it's completed.
Wherever kids do homework, it's important to make sure their workspace is:
If kids need a computer for schoolwork, try to set it up in a common space, not in a bedroom, so you can discourage playing video games, chatting with or emailing friends, or surfing the Internet for fun during study time. Also consider parental controls, available through your Internet service provider (ISP), and software that blocks and filters any inappropriate material. Find out which sites your kids' teachers recommend and bookmark them for easy access.
When it comes to homework, be there to offer support and guidance, answer questions, help interpret assignment instructions, and review the completed work. But resist the urge to provide the right answers or complete assignments.
Focus on helping kids develop the problem-solving skills they'll need to get through this assignment and any others, and offer your encouragement as they do. They'll develop confidence and a love of learning from doing it themselves.
Here are more tips to help make homework easier for kids:
Especially as kids get older, homework can really start to add up and become harder to manage. These strategies can help:
Don't wait for report cards to find out that there are problems at school. The sooner you intervene, the sooner you can help your child get back on track.
Consistent complaints about homework or ongoing struggles with assignments could indicate a problem.
In some cases, kids simply need to learn and practice better study habits. Be sure your kids are writing down assignments correctly and encourage them to keep a daily homework notebook, which can help both kids and parents know exactly what assignments are due and when. If a particular assignment is giving your child more trouble than others, send a note to the teacher pointing out the difficulties.
But when a kid consistently has a hard time understanding or completing homework, broader issues (such as learning disabilities, ADHD, or vision or hearing difficulties) might be interfering with academic progress.
By reviewing homework with your child and talking to your child's teacher, you can identify any learning problems and tackle them early on.
The key to truly helping kids with homework is to know when to step in. Make sure your kids know that you're available if there's a snag, but that it's important to work independently. Encourage effort and determination — not just the grades they get.
Be a good example by showing your own love of learning. While your child does homework, do your own — read books, magazines, and newspapers; write letters, lists, and emails; use math skills to calculate expenses or balance the checkbook. By showing that learning remains important — even fun — once school's over, you'll help your kids understand that building knowledge is something to enjoy throughout life.
Reviewed by: Steven Dowshen, MD
Date reviewed: September 2013
|ProQuest ProQuest provides information teaching and learning resources for K-12 schools and libraries.|
|BrainPop This is a great site for kids with informational movies about science, anatomy, weather, and more.|
|Children's Television Workshop This site, from the creators of Seasame Street, offers activities and advice for you and your kids.|
|Discovery Kids.com Looking for ideas and experiments away from the computer? Check out this site, which also lets you share the results of your adventures with other kids online.|
|Internet Public Library The Internet Public Library offers homework help for kids and teens.|
|Family Education The best of the Internet's content, resources, and shopping for parents.|
|Parent Teacher Association (PTA) The PTA encourages parental involvement in public schools.|
|U.S. Department of Education This government site offers advice, links, homework help, and information for parents, teachers, and students.|
|School and Asthma If a kid has asthma, he or she needs to know how to handle it at school. Find out more in this article for kids.|
|Is Your Child Too Busy? Some kids have too much to do and not enough time to do it. Is your child too busy?|
|School-Age Readers From kindergarten through third grade, kids' ability to read will grow by leaps and bounds. Although teachers provide lots of help, parents continue to play a role in a child's reading life.|
|Getting Involved at Your Child's School Whether their kids are just starting kindergarten or entering the final year of high school, there are many good reasons for parents to volunteer at school.|
|Getting Along With Teachers Kids who get along with their teachers not only learn more, but they're more comfortable asking questions and getting extra help. Read this article to find out how to build good relationships with your teachers.|
|School Counselors Add school counselors to the list of people you can turn to when you need help. They know how to listen and can help kids with life's challenges.|
|What Is Plagiarism? Plagiarism is a form of cheating because it's stealing another person's ideas. But there's a right way to use Internet sources and other references when you're doing homework or a report. Find out more.|
|Organize, Focus, Get It Done Take these three steps and you'll do better in school.|
|Group Projects for School Group projects can be a great learning experience if you know how to plan them out and work together. Find out how in this article for kids.|
|Moving to Middle School You're moving on up - to middle school. But what will it be like?|
|Help Your Child Get Organized Most kids generate a little chaos and disorganization. But if you'd like yours to be more organized and to stay focused on tasks, such as homework, here are 3 steps that make it possible.|
|Understanding Dyslexia Dyslexia is a learning disability that makes it hard to learn to read and understand written language. Even kids with average or above-average intelligence can have dyslexia.|
|Top 10 Homework Tips Kids are more successful in school when parents take an active interest in homework - here are ways to help.|
|School and Diabetes Are you on your own at school when you're dealing with diabetes? Not at all. Your teachers, coaches, school nurse - and even your friends - can help you out.|
|Can Vision Problems Affect School Performance? Find out what the experts have to say.|
|Back to School Kids often have a tough time making the back-to-school transition. Here's how to help them.|
|Going Back to School There's a lot of "new" in the first day of school. New teachers, new friends, new shoes, new notebooks, and sometimes, a new school. Find out more about going back to school in this article for kids.|
|When Tests Make You Nervous Some people get nervous and worried when they take tests, even if they studied. If that's you, read this article to find out how to stay cool at school when it's time to take a test.|
|Helping With Homework Tips and advice on helping kids and teens with classwork and problems at school.|
|Getting Homework Help Homework, homework, homework. How do you get it done? Get some tips in this article for kids.|
|Helping Your Teen With Homework Parents can play a crucial role in helping teens succeed in school by lending a little help, support, and guidance, and by knowing what problems demand their involvement and which ones require them to hang back.|
|The Real Deal on Repeating a Grade Do you know anyone who has repeated a grade? Find out why this happens in this article for kids.|
|What to Do if You Don't Like School Everyone has a bad day at school once in a while, but some kids really don't like school. Read this article for kids to find out more.|
What to expect when coming to Akron Children's
For healthcare providers and nurses
Residency & Fellowships, Medical Students, Nursing and Allied Health
For prospective employees and career-seekers
Our online community that provides inspirational stories and helpful information.