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With school comes homework. They do go hand in hand, don’t they? Some kids, like my firstborn, have a natural gift for being able to efficiently get their homework done on time completely on their own. Some other kids, and I have a few, don’t do this quite so naturally on their own. So if you have one of these homework challenged kids in your bunch, how can you help them?
I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be a homework nag. I don’t want to have to be the one standing over my child, harping at them to get their homework done. I don’t want to have to hold their hand, either. Of course all kids need help, and genuine help is not what I am trying to combat here. I am trying to train my kids to be responsible for completing their own homework, leaving me out of the role of “homework Nazi!”
I’ve got five ways that we as parents can help train and teach our kids to get their homework done efficiently, correctly, and on time!
Here are the five homework rules that we have in our house, and establishing these rules in your house can take you from homework dictator to homework helper, too.
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Rule number one: All electronics have to go away, with the exception of music in some cases
I have a couple of A.D.D. kids who focus better with music. This is so hard for me to understand since music, or noise for that matter, always was a distraction for me, but I have learned to be a student of my kids in order to more accurately assess what they need, even if its something different from what I would need.
Most kids have cell phones these days, so these would be a big no-no according to this rule, and email is also another way that my kids waste time so no email during this time, either. Remember how I talked about getting more done by turning off the alerts for my email and social media? I do the same thing for my kids so they can focus fully on their homework.
Rule number two: Do the thing they hate first
I have actually done this for as long as I can remember in my own life, and it is such a valuable thing in my life that I share it with everyone I know and require my kids to abide by this principle, too. Whether it is in regards to their schoolwork or in chores, responsibilities, or even training for their sport, the dreaded thing comes first. I use this principle in just about every way in my life.
So then, whichever subject they dread or whichever homework assignment seems overwhelming is the one I strongly encourage them to complete first.
Rule number three: When a homework assignment has been completed and signed off on by me if necessary, the supplies for that subject get put away wherever they go for the next day
In homeschooling seven kids, our house can look like a bomb has exploded during the school day, but cracking down on completing one subject at a time and then putting it AWAY has greatly helped with keeping clutter at bay. No one is very productive when they have the overwhelm of chaos.
Rule number four: After a brief time off after the school day, schoolwork or homework will be completed before any privileges take place
This means that my kids have gotten to a practice or event late a time or two, but it has only had to happen a couple of times for my kids to make sure that it doesn’t happen again.
Rule number five: I as a parent will not take responsibility for homework
This includes trips to the store for project supplies that were procrastinated as well as homework that is incomplete. By the time they are in third grade, my kids are old enough to take complete ownership for their homework. That’s not to say that I won’t help or gently remind, but I am no longer going to rule over them about their homework by third grade.
Are you ready to primarily remove yourself from the homework equation? Implementing these five rules are just what you need. Helping with homework is completely different than completing homework or taking responsibility for homework. By all means help, but if you are like me, your kids need to have some rules in order to take ownership of homework themselves.
(Please note, this post does contain affiliate links and if you make a purchase, I will receive a small commission. Please see the full disclosure policy at the bottom of the blog page for more details).
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