Written by Evelyn Castillo-Fundora
Hello Kendall Moms and Dads! If your kids are anything like my boys then your daily afternoon routine begins with pleads and excuses of homework avoidance. In my everyday interactions with my Kendall clients, I’ve come to realize that I am not alone. I am not the only parent who is happier than my kids to hear that there’s NO HOMEWORK! In this post, I hope to help with Easy Tricks To End Homework Battles.
Tackling The Homework Battle
Homework!! This word appears to be the most challenging word related to school that parents deal with. While some children are self-directed, there are many children who need much coaxing to get this task done. Especially with so many distractions around us like TV, internet, and phones, many parents feel that they are fighting a losing battle. THE HOMEWORK BATTLE!
Yes, it can be a literal battle! It can lead and end in anger, tears, hurt feelings, and frustration for both the parent and the child. Sometimes It makes us parents feel like it’s an unavoidable consequence of being a responsible parent.
These homework battles rarely result in improved learning or performance and definitely no progress toward what should be our ultimate goals:
- Helping our children love learning.
- Developing age-appropriate responsibilities, independence, and discipline.
The Types of Homework Personalities
Before trying any strategies with your children, let’s talk about what homework personality you’re working with at home.
It’s 9:00 at night, you’re finally sitting down on the couch, reclining your seat, and about to watch the new episode of your favorite show. Well, so you thought! You hear footsteps in the hallway, all of the sudden your child appears from the dark shadows with their book bag in their hands, and says those words all parents dread to hear, “mom, I need help with my homework.” This is totally like my 9-year-old.
Suggestion: In cases like this, it’s best to NOT, I repeat NOT give them time to procrastinate. Make it a routine to complete homework as soon as they come home from school, while their mind is still on school mode. Once their mind transitions to home mode, getting the child’s mind to transition back to school mode will result in fights, tears, and frustration.
The Speed Racer
You pick up your child from school. They’re sitting in the backseat and you hear zippers opening, pages turning, and pencils moving. “What are you doing back there?” “Nothing because I’m already done.” You look over the homework and it’s a mess! Practically illegible, careless mistakes, spelling and punctuation errors, and clearly didn’t read all the directions.
Suggestion: Have your child sit at their homework table with a timer. No matter how fast your speed racer finishes their homework they have to continue sitting there reviewing until the timer goes off. This will help your child slow down on the homework process making sure it’s neat and correct. Create a checklist based on things to look for.
It’s 4:00 pm and your child takes out their homework. They take out their pencil and eraser, then places them in an assembly line right in front of their homework. You think to yourself, “Wow, how independent,” and begin doing some house cleaning. After some time you check your watch and it’s 5:30 pm, you look up and notice your child still doing homework. You walk towards them, look over their shoulder and notice they are still on number one. The table is full of eraser shavings, the paper looks like it’s about to tear, and your child seems frustrated so you ask your child, “What’s going on?” and they respond with, “my handwriting looks terrible and none of my sentences are good enough.”
Suggestions: Use a timer in order to set limits for each assignment. If it’s a writing assignment, use a “no spelling counts rule,” to take the stress off the spelling and just get the assignment done. Then set a timer for corrections.
The I forgotter
Your child comes home from school, you both sit at the homework table, they take out their agenda and SEE…nothing. There’s nothing written in the agenda. You ask, “What do you have to do for homework?” They reply, “ I don’t know, I forgot.” “When is the science project due?” They reply, “I don’t remember.”
Suggestions: Allow the student to keep a reminder taped to his desk to write homework in agenda. Use a phone to take a picture of the assignment while the teachers are explaining the homework (of course if phones are allowed)
You open the front door and your child runs right to their room to play. You wait an hour then say, “It’s getting late, start your homework.” They reply, “ I don’t have any homework today.” You decide to check the student portal, and sure enough, there was homework.
Suggestion: Try to motivate your child by finding a connection between the homework and your child’s interests. For example, if your child is learning geometric shapes and likes legos, build shapes using Legos. Allow for breaks when your child has reached the point of frustration.
Developing a Routine to End Homework Battles For Ever
From my experience as a psychologist and being a mom, I’ve learned that one of the most successful tools in overcoming the homework battle is developing a routine. Have your child find a place they feel comfortable to sit at every day at the same time. This will help make homework become as automatic as waking up in the morning. I hope you enjoy our Simple and Easy Tricks To End Homework Battles and continue to grow with your children.
Engage With us
What are some things that have worked for you that help other parents with Simple and Easy Tricks to End Homework Battles? Comment below
Note: If you’ve attempted these strategies for an extended period of time and there is little to no improvement, there may be an underlying cause to your child struggling tendencies. It’s important to follow up with a professional for further guidance.
To connect with Evelyn Castillo-Fundora and see more of her posts, visit her We Are Kendall page HERE
You can also visit Evelyn Castillo-Fundora’s organization page: Myschoolpsychologistinc.com