Hands On Homework Help for Parents Homework is often a source of anxiety and struggle for parents, particularly if your child resists homework. Providing a structure to the homework process can be very helpful. Here are some helpful tips: 1. Create a routine – There are many opinions about what works best, but know your child and develop a homework routine that works for you. If you are able, encourage your child to get homework done right away after school so they have as much play and relaxation time as possible. If your child needs to blow off steam after school or you pick him or her up from daycare, have them do homework after some play time. Limit the time and give your child an opportunity to transition when he or she has to stop playing. 2. Have a specific location for completing homework – with all of the supplies your child will need to complete their work. 3. Do a backpack check for any important papers or to check for assignments. Ask questions about what you find. This information will help you understand how your child is feeling about school and the work that must be done. 4. Break it down – If your child has a lot of homework, help him or her break it down into smaller, more manageable bits. It may be helpful to offer a five-minute movement break between tasks if your child has difficulty keeping focused. 5. What worked for you may not work for your child – Understand that you and your child may be wired differently. You will have to tweak the routine based on your child’s individual needs. If you were a “get your work done right after school” type of kid and your child is a “blow off steam” kind of kid, allow that adjustment. You’ll find that if you consider your child’s temperament, the homework process will be less painless. 6. Minimize distractions – Keep the television and video games off during homework time. It splits focus and makes homework take longer. This can lead to stress and frustration. 7. Save the reading for right before bedtime – Use reading as one to one wind down time with you. As your child becomes more independent in their reading, grab a book and read alongside your child. Adults need a little wind down time too. 8. Finally, avoid the power struggle, not the homework – Encourage your child and celebrate when they get their homework done. Try to focus on what they have accomplished and not what they are not doing right. If he or she needs to redo or add to their work, off the feedback as constructively as possible. If you find yourself getting frustrated, step away for a minute. Manage your emotions before returning to help your child.