by Dr. Charice Hayes, Founder
by Dr. Charice Hayes, Founder
by Susan Good retirededucator.org
Learning how to focus on the task at hand can take years to perfect, and for many kids across the US, it can be difficult to find a good balance between school work and homework. Moving from the classroom to all the distractions that home offers can be jarring, leading to a decline in grades and poor self-esteem. That’s why it’s so important to help your child find a distraction-free zone to do schoolwork in, whether it’s in a room that is isolated from the rest of the house or just a desk where they have room for all the tools they need to learn.
You can also make other areas of your home more conducive to learning, such as adding a reading nook that has good lighting and comfy chairs to sit in. This is especially helpful for kids who aren’t automatically drawn to books, and it can help them find a love of literature that will help boost their experience in school.
Keep reading for the best tips on how to create a distraction-free zone for your kids at home.
Find a Quiet Space
Whether the learning area you create is in a room by itself or is simply an organized desk for homework, it should be a quiet space that won’t allow for interruptions. This is especially important if you have more than one child. Look for an area that is away from the main part of the house, or one that can be closed off easily for privacy and quiet.
Create a Reading Nook
Even kids who don’t necessarily love to read will enjoy having a space of their own to sit and look through the books that interest them, so creating a reading nook could benefit your child greatly. Add a comfy chair or pillows, strong lighting, and storage for books, and make sure it’s in a spot that will give your child a little privacy, as it’s difficult to become engaged in a book when there’s a lot going on around us. Make sure you look for books that are both educational and fun, on topics that interest your child. If you’re unsure of how to get started, you might consider hiring a professional to come in and remodel the area; click here for more information.
Set a Schedule
Now that you have the space, it’s a good idea to set a schedule for your child to do his homework or to study. It can be hard to get into a rhythm when there are so many other things going on, such as soccer practice and afterschool activities, so help your child find a routine that will benefit him on a daily basis. Once he gets into the habit of starting homework at a certain time, he’ll be more likely to stick with it throughout the school year.
Turn Off the Devices
Whether your child loves the TV, computer, tablet, game system, or smartphone, it’s important to set rules about when he can use them when school is in session, as they can be a pretty big distraction. The area where he studies and does homework should be device-free, although some studies have shown that classical music played at a low volume can be beneficial for kids who are trying to focus on tasks.
Creating a distraction-free zone for your child can have multiple benefits, especially if he has a learning disability or finds it difficult to concentrate at home, where there are so many opportunities to do anything other than learn. It’s also important to make sure your child isn’t hungry, thirsty, or tired when he sits down to do homework, as being uncomfortable can be a distraction in itself.
by Emily Graham, Mighty Moms
Almost one-third of teenagers feel sad or depressed due to stress. School has become more and more nerve-wracking, even for younger children, as the pressure builds from all directions. There are classes, homework, tests, extracurricular activities, and sports, as well as the constant need to be cool and hang out with the right crowd.
Now the first day of school is coming, and that can be downright intimidating, especially if your child already suffers from anxiety. It’s going to take some extra effort on your part to ensure they get through it with as little stress as possible. Here are some tips.
Adopt the Right Attitude
Your goal is to calm them, not deliver lectures when discussing school. In fact, Chris Palmer, the author of Raising Your Kids to Succeed: What Every Parent Should Know, urges you to be caring, empathetic and supportive. Listen to their problems and worries while letting your children find their own solutions. Above all, be sure to show your unconditional love.
Make Sure They Stay Fit
Healthy habits relieve stress, says a wellness coach writing for Verywell Mind. There’s not much time left before summer ends, so get them exercising and eating well so it becomes a routine. Encourage them to work a physical activity they enjoy into their schedule while you plan meals packed with vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein. The last piece of the puzzle is a bedtime routine so they get enough sleep and wake up refreshed.
Get on Track Early
The first hour of the day sets the tone, so establish a morning routine that flows effortlessly from waking up to arriving at school with no hang-ups in between. Preparation starts the night before with packing lunches, laying out clothes, and even making breakfast. That will have the kids well-fed and looking good with no morning rush to set off their nerves.
Buy the Supplies They Need
They’ll struggle with work if they don’t have the right gear to get their homework done easily, and that leads to frustration. Start with the basics like a book bag, paper, pens, and binders before moving on to high-tech items like calculators. Among older students, more and more are carrying laptops to class, which are invaluable when researching and writing papers.
It’s easy to fall behind with so many projects and papers to finish unless you have a system in place to keep your child up to date. A filing cabinet and labeled bins work wonders, along with Post-It notes to remind them what needs doing and when.
Learn Calming Strategies
Even if your child is prepared for the day, something is likely to get on their nerves, such as a classmate or a tough assignment. There are strategies to cope with this frustration, and using them properly could save a lot of trouble down the road. A writer at The Mighty recommends deep breathing, listening to music, and imagining a calm place to settle their nerves.
Talk to Them About Risks
Dangers lurk in between classes, especially for teens who may encounter classmates who smoke, drink, or use drugs. Your child may be tempted to do the same, either to deal with the pressures of school or just to be cool. Explain how this is never the right way to cope with anxiety, as it could lead to an addiction that ruins their health and their life.
Take It Easy
Classes start easy and get more difficult as the year progresses. This gives your child the opportunity to ease into their studies rather than take off at full throttle. Use this time to your advantage by encouraging good work habits and keeping to a schedule with enough breaks so they don’t get overwhelmed.
Healthy, organized, and informed, your child is ready to tackle the year with gusto. Any lingering anxiety should be manageable by staying positive and sticking to your routine. With a little effort, their school days will be as exciting as they are productive.
Image via Pixabay
The “looming threat” of another year of homework assignments—and potential battles—may overshadow the anticipation of a new school year. But homework routines don’t have to be a painful process, if you and your kids discuss and set the ground rules and expectations early on. Involving your children encourages them to take ownership of their success, too.
With the plethora of distractions to pull a kid’s attention in a million directions once she’s home from school, is it any wonder that — especially after a long day of learning — the last thing she wants to do when she walks in the door is homework? Instead of letting your temper get the better of you, try these suggestions for helping your child tackle homework.
Set the stage
Your children’s ages may determine the best place for them to work. You can easily supervise younger kids when they’re in the kitchen or dining room as you’re prepping dinner. Older kids might prefer to work in their rooms or the den. Decide what works for everyone.
Fill a well-stocked station with typical school supplies. When your kids need a computer, keep it in a central location where you can oversee their work.
Some kids work well listening to music. Others prefer silence. Either works, but keep the homework zone free from other distractions including the television, video games and smartphones or tablets.
Create a routine
You and the kids should decide whether homework’s top priority immediately after school or dinner. Some children need 30 minutes to decompress with a snack. Others want to jump in and finish everything immediately. Your kids’ homework schedules might change depending on the day, if they’re involved in afterschool or evening activities. Just continue to reinforce that homework is a priority.
It’s never too soon to teach kids how to plan and strategize. Some kids tackle the hard stuff first. Others prefer to save it for last. Use a calendar to track long-term assignments and decide, with your kiddo, how to chunk projects so they’re not spending six hours working on it the night before it’s due.
Motivating reluctant students
Don’t nag! Creating a negative environment from the outset often backfires. Instead, cultivate a “We’re in this together” approach where you’re available to assist. Be positive. Buy into the assigned work and explain the value of each task.
Teach them to prioritize. Encourage older students with a heavier workload to take regular breaks. Set a timer for 15 – 20 minutes. It’s also never too early to teach your kids how to organize.
Link success to effort. It’s easy to cheer someone on with an “I know you can do it!” attitude, but if you remind her about that ‘A’ she earned after a week of practice, you’ll reinforce a very healthy message that effort and perseverance lead to success.
Know when to call the cavalry. If your child spends what you think is an exorbitant amount of time on homework, or is confused by an assignment, contact her teacher. You also might consider hiring a tutor. Both professionals are trained to handle multiple questions and explain the classwork.
Reaching the finish line
Sometimes, the best way to motivate a child to complete his or her homework is to offer a fun incentive. While some people may worry that offering rewards conditions children to do what’s required or requested only when there’s something in it for them, research disagrees. Using a reward system is not a bribe — and there are a variety of systems to try until you find one that works for your family.
When the weather’s nice, why not incorporate the outdoors into that reward, especially since your kiddo’s probably been sitting inside for most of the day, and studies show that outdoor time is critical to a young person’s development.
Take the whole family on a nature scavenger hunt or go bird watching. Pile onto the bikes and ride to the park to play. Or, if your kids love to learn, check out these fun outdoor learning activities.
Homework is meant to provide reinforcement and extra practice. Set a good example, too, by curling up to read or do your own paperwork during homework time.
Photo Credit: pexels.com
About the Author:
Emily Graham is the creator of mightymoms.net. She believes being a mom is one of the hardest jobs around and wanted to create a support system for moms from all walks of life. On her site, she offers a wide range of info tailored for busy moms — from how to reduce stress to creative ways to spend time together as a family.
by Dr. Charice Hayes, CEO
Over the past few years, we have been asked by potential clients and clients for our tutors to go over homework. Our response to that is that we don’t go over homework, but we provide homework assistance/help. Let’s explain.
-Going over homework does not instill skills for autonomy.
-To promote autonomy, we promote and use effective research-based modeling.
-Once a client displays independence with that skill, he/she will be comfortable with doing his/her own homework assignment.
All of our tutors are trained in research-based techniques. We are in the business of not only improving content/skill level and grades, but character too.
by Dr. Charice Hayes, Founder
Have you or your child(ren) said, “I study, but I just can’t get it” or “I just can’t get what the teacher/professor is saying in the class?”
Perhaps your study habits or class attentiveness is not align with how you absorb certain information. Yes, learning styles can be good. However, a number of techniques maybe better, such as the use of mnemonics. This is can be very complex to teachers. Yes you want to be inclusive of every student. However, every student absorbs information differently. This is the main reason All 4 One Tutoring customizes each clients’ one-on-one tutoring plan, and our tutors are trained on research-based techniques. Feel free to leave a comment.
by Dr. Charice Hayes, CEO All 4 One Tutoring
About a month ago, I read a report about how NAACP delegates and the National Board called for a decision to delay the expansion of charter schools. A task force was assembled called the Task Force for Quality Education. The Task Force gathered nationwide data on the state of charter schools and traditional public schools. Here is what the Task Force found:
As an organization, All 4 One Tutoring LLC we have tapped into providing services to charter schools. We run a very successful after-school program at the Empowerment Academy in Baltimore, Maryland. We help fill in educational gaps and do activities and projects that help prepare students for college along with helping them have a smooth transition into high school. My take on the report is that I agree that the charter school sector needs to align financial transparency with consistent accountability.