Homework can be challenging and we want children to be able to work through difficult challenges.
Sometimes time is limited: family obligations, places to get to, plenty of life stuff! Getting the homework completed in a timely manner is necessary.
On a “not-so-crazy-day” make homework time an opportunity to help a child learn HOW to learn, so they can have an “I can do this” mindset.
Be a helpful supporter…a coach who:
- doesn’t get caught up doing most or all of the work.
- remains emotionally available – non-stressed and atuned.
(That’s why I recommended starting on a, “not-so-crazy-day”!)
HOMEWORK SITUATION: Your child is overwhelmed by the math homework – the problems are challenging – there’s lots to do! You hear:
“These are hard. I’ll never finish!” or
“I don’t understand what I’m supposed to do.”
As their coach show them HOW to deal with the challenge:
- Help your child find one small doable part to begin with.
- Use a blank sheet of paper and cover most of the page – so that only one problem is showing.
- Say, “Don’t think about anything else – just this one problem – or – one step of a problem.”
- Say, “Can you find an example of what you did in school – or think of how it was done in school?”
- Be sure to say, “I am proud of you for trying to find one small part that you can do.”
Breaking down the work into small achievable pieces is an important strategy! Working at one small piece helps them feel capable. Even if your child doesn’t complete the entire problem, or the entire homework assignment…
they are learning a life skill to use with any challenge!
Your child begins to realize:
- When the work seems overwhelming, I need to take tiny steps. When I do I am trying… and that counts!
- If I don’t get it right, I can show how I tried.
- I may need more time to understand it and to practice.
- Thinking “I can do this” helps get the work done!