Whether you develop a permanent spot or use a dining room table, make sure you help your child maintain a consistent study schedule. Routines provide structure and are stress relieving. Some children work best diving into homework immediately after school, while others do better with a brief snack and some “down time” before they begin. Determine with your child what their best study time is and help them stick to it for one month until it becomes part of their daily schedule. This technique will not only help them handle their homework while in school but will also help them organize their lives effectively as they get greater responsibilities.
This is easier said than done, especially if your child needs to work on a computer to do their homework. Try closing email and texting applications while they are working, or establish a rule that they can’t be read or answered until work is done. Turn off the television, even if it’s in the background. Make sure cell phone ringers are turned off, and, even better, remove the cell phone from the work space. Parents should make sure you’re not being a distraction in any way, so avoid answering calls or making a lot of unnecessary noise during study time. Make it clear to your child that all the members of the family honor homework time.
While you’re creating your child’s work space remember that this isn’t about you and your needs, this is about your child and what space is going to be the most conducive for them getting work done. Designate a space that isn’t alienated from the rest of the house, where they can settle in and feel comfortable doing their homework. The space should be big enough to study in and clearly defined. It is OK for the space to be the kitchen table, as long as when the child is using it for homework they know that it is “theirs.” Make sure that the space has a comfortable chair, an electrical outlet for a computer, and an area where they can store reference books. buy modafinil online
Make time as a family to review the schedule that will be in place when school starts:
- How early does everyone need to get up in the morning?
- What time does your child need to leave for school?
- Will he be getting lunch at school or packing a lunch?
- How will he be getting there?
- What happens after school?
- How much time do you expect him to be spending on homework?
These are all important things for the whole family to keep in mind, especially parents who need to carve out extra time to help with homework. If your child is starting a new school or is in a new classroom, make sure they know just where to go.
Never underestimate the power of proper lighting! Make sure your child can see what they’re studying well by installing a desk lamp or choosing a spot that has ample natural light (for daytime studying). Create a space with your child so it reflects things that they find helpful or pleasant, like a special wall calendar or their favorite desk accessories or motifs. Adding a corkboard that they can maintain with their favorite photos, as well as important school information, is an excellent way for them to take ownership of the space. You’ll want to make sure the surface of the desk or table that they are using has enough space for all the work they need to sort so nothing gets lost in a messy pile.
Starting back to school can be especially stressful to kids who are struggling academically. Spending some relaxed time with the family doing an activity that everyone enjoys helps take their minds off the impending stress of school starting and helps children strengthen their bonds with parents. The more confident and relaxed they feel as school begins the better their outlook will be for the new year. Take the time to just enjoy each other before the hard work of a new year begins!
Sit down with your child before school starts and discuss what you both expect for the coming year. Come up with goals and expectations you both feel are manageable. Some questions to discuss are:
- What kinds of grades can you realistically expect?
- How will you measure or reward meeting academic milestones?
- How many times a week will your child be meeting with their EI teacher?
- How much time will be dedicated each day to homework?
- How much homework help can you realistically give your child each week?
- When will you expect them to complete homework—right after school, before dinner, after dinner?
- How many extracurricular activities will they be involved in?
- Is participation in extracurricular activities a reward for good grades or an expectation?
Think about all the things your child will need that should be in easy reach of their study space to avoid any interruptions in their workflow. Even if you have a multi-functional space—like a kitchen table—as your designated study space, you can put your materials in a portable storage bin or rolling cart so it’s within easy access. Depending on the grade, here are some common supplies they may need:
- Construction paper
- Glue sticks, bottle of glue, scissors
- Index cards
- Pens, pencils, highlighters, pencil sharpener, eraser
- Poster board
- Printer paper and print cartridges
- Storage box
- Wall calendar
- Water-based markers
- Watercolor paints
Bed times usually start slipping further and further back as the summer plugs along. By the time summer ends, bedtime (Bedtime? What bedtime?) can be completely out of alignment with a regular school night schedule. The best way to make sure that your child, even your teenager, can meet his first days of school at his best is to get him to sleep early and up again early one week before school starts, when he doesn’t have a lot of new school responsibilities or a new routine yet. This is especially important if he’s beginning a new school altogether (which is inherently a little more stressful.) Remember that school-age children need 10-11 hours of sleep each night. It benefits everyone if they are well rested.
These days parents often get an extensive list of specific supplies needed for that first day of class and many scramble to the stores the weekend before school starts to find the shelves almost bare and completely worked over. By getting your child’s school supplies as soon as you get the list of what’s needed—preferably mid-summer—you can not only make sure your child starts the new year feeling confident knowing he has all the tools he’ll need, but you can also save money by taking advantage of all the great sales throughout the summer. This will save you and your child a lot of stress come September. Also remember to take advantage of summer sales for any back to school clothing that your child needs. buy lioresal online