Study Skills and Homework Tips: Tips for Parents
By helping your child with homework, you can learn more about what your child is learning in school, communicate about what he or she is learning, and spark your child’s enthusiasm.
Checklist for Helping Your Child with Homework
To show that you think education and homework are important, you should:
- Talk with your child about their homework
- Know what your child’s homework assignments are
- Help your child get organized
- Set a regular time everyday for homework
- Provide a well-lit, quiet place to study
- Provide your child with the materials needed to do assignments
- Make sure the TV is turned off while your child completes homework
- See that your child starts and completes assignments
- Encourage your child to develop good study habits
- Set a good example by showing your child that the skills he or she is learning are an important part of the things adults do
- Stay in touch with your child’s teacher
Why do Teachers Assign Homework? Homework is important because it can:
- Improve your child's thinking and memory
- Help your child develop positive study skills and habits that will serve him or her well throughout life
- Encourage your child to use time wisely
- Teach your child to work independently
- Teach your child to take responsibility for his or her work
Teachers assign homework because it helps your child:
- Review and practice what has been covered in class
- Get ready for the next day’s class
- Learn to use resources, such as libraries, reference materials, and computer Web sites to find information
- Explore subjects more fully than classroom time permits
- Extend learning by applying skills to new situations
- Integrate learning by applying many different skills to a single task, such as book reports or science projects
Homework benefits you as a parent. By helping your child, you can:
- Learn more about what your child is learning in school
- Communicate about what he or she is learning
- Spark your child’s enthusiasmH
How Should I Help My Child With Homework?
- Show that you think education and homework are important. If your child knows that you care about what is happening at school, he or she will have a good reason to complete assignments on time.
- Set a regular time for homework. The best schedule for homework is what works best for your child and your family. Your child’s outside activities, such as sports or music lessons may mean that you need a flexible homework schedule.
- Provide an area for your child to do homework. Make sure the area is well-lit and has minimal distractions.
- Ensure that there are no distractions. Discourage your child from making and receiving social telephone calls during homework time. Turn off the television if it is keeping your child from doing his or her homework.
- Provide supplies and identify resources. Have pencils, pens, erasers, writing paper, a dictionary, or other supplies that may be helpful available.
- Help your child use everyday routines to support the skills he or she is learning. Teach your child to play word and math games. Help your child look up information about something in which he or she is interested.
- Look over completed assignments before they are turned in. Then, after the teacher returns completed homework, read the comments to see if your child has done the assignment satisfactorily.
- Talk about school and learning activities in family conversations. Ask your child what was discussed in class that day.
- Show your child that the skills he or she is learning are an important part of the things adults do. Let your child see you reading, writing, or using math. Talk to your child about what you do at work.
- Attend school activities. If you can, volunteer to help in your child’s classroom or at special events.
How Do I Help My Child Develop Good Study Habits?
- Do not do your child’s homework
- Help your child make a schedule
- Help your child manage time to complete assignments
- Help your child get started when he or she has to do research reports or other big assignments
- After your child has completed the research, listen as he or she tells you the points to get across through the report
- Help your child avoid last minute studying
- Talk with your child about how to take a test
- Give practice tests
You can be a great help to your child if you will observe these do’s and don’ts about tests and testing:
- Do encourage your child
- Do make sure your child attends school regularly
- Do provide a quiet, comfortable place for studying at home
- Do give your child a well rounded diet. A healthy body leads to a healthy, active mind
- Do make sure your child is well rested on the day of the test
- Don’t be too anxious about your child’s test scores
- Don’t judge your child on the basis of a single test score
How to Reduce Test Anxiety
- Space studying over days or weeks
- Don’t “cram” the night before
- Read the directions carefully when the teacher hands out the test
- Review the entire exam to see what types of questions are included
- If the answer to a question is not known, skip it and go on
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