We want our children to succeed at everything they do, but grade school aged children still need a lot of guidance and help from adults, even if they are stubborn when it comes to taking this advice. It’s a responsibility that you have as a parent to help your child be successful and responsible when it comes to school work. Here’s how you can help.
One way that parents can help their children do well in school and ensure that their children are open to their advice is to simply make it known (and often) that you are here to help whenever they are needed. Make sure that you follow through with this promise even when you are busy. If you offer to help your child and later blow them off, they will likely not ask you again even if they are really struggling. You need to prove that you care and that you are a trustworthy adult who keeps their word. After all, you are your child’s biggest role model.
Have you ever tried to tell a child how to do something only to have them argue and go the opposite way? Children like to feel a sense of independence and they really do think that they are right and they are capable. You want to be there to assist them without diminishing their self confidence so listen to what they have to say even if you know how to go about completing the assignment or project. Don’t interrupt when your child is working and only offer your help if they ask. Afterward, look over the assignment and give your input then. Be sure to explain any errors they made in a way that does not discourage them. In their mind, they worked really hard and are proud of themselves for accomplishing something themselves, which is a good thing.
Make sure you ask your child about their homework, their classmates, their teacher, and how school is going for them in general. Become aware of the subjects that your child has the most difficulty with. Understanding their particular strengths and weaknesses will help you better assist your child in reaching academic goals. Children will sometimes simply give up on a certain subject or choose not to even attempt an assignment if they really struggle with a certain subject, because they may feel defeated and discouraged when they try really hard to do well and end up with a bad grade.
Stay on Task and on Schedule:
Allow your child to have a snack and work on homework before they will be allowed to play with friends or pets or watch television. That way, these activities are rewards for their hard work and homework does not get pushed back until later in the evening when your child is most likely to be less alert and you are both more likely to forget about the homework entirely. Be consistent with the time of day that you choose for homework to be worked on and only allow breaks to play if the child is working on a large, time consuming project. Make sure homework is priority number one above chores and other activities.
Take Advantage of the Services of a Tutor:
Don’t hesitate to ask for help if you feel your child could benefit from studying with a tutor. Some schools offer this service free of charge in the evenings, but if you prefer one-on-one tutoring in your home, your child’s school will likely be able to put you in touch with an experienced, capable individual. High school aged children are a good choice for tutoring younger children, because they will often charge at a very affordable rate.