Getting your kids to do their homework, which most teenagers hate and consider their worst enemy, can prove to be a monumental and an almost impossible task nowadays. Especially with them always wanting to be on their phones or hanging out with their friends, homework is the least of their priority and concerns.
Is it really possible for you to get them motivated to do their academic tasks? It is through the mix of mental, physical, and emotional strategies to make them actually feels motivated (and even excited) to do their homework! Here are some effective tips to giving them the push without actually being too imposing and authoritative:
1. Observe, listen, and read between the lines.
You may want to observe your kids habits first: What do they do upon arriving home? How long do they do these? Is homework one of these? After observing, try to assess the overall situation and if you decide to have a sitdown with them, be objective and explain your point of view about them managing their activities. If they reason out, listen and offer advice – and don’t scold them.
2. Be attuned to your child’s emotional state.
Teenagers, when you point something out, emotions may run high and those may be translated to you criticizing them. Check your tone and voice – say when you tell them that you don’t notice them doing their homework, ask them if they are having a hard time doing it and offer help to them. Conversation will be much easier for both of you.
3. Here is where motivation and inspiration come in.
Seeing your child excitedly prepare to meet their friends? They may huff and roll their eyes when you ask them if they have already done their homework, but don’t nag – instead, tell them that you are letting them go provided that they finish their homework before the night ends. They will see that you are being very reasonable and fair. In this light, you may also tell them that there can be consequences if they fail to keep the end of their bargain, and they can’t grumble about it.
4. Don’t make your child feel that they are a failure.
When their teacher informs you that they are behind in their classes and homework, don’t lash out and make them feel more miserable. Be constructive with your comments and be encouraging that they can do better. This is also a good time to talk about focus and managing their tasks and time.
After preparing yourself mentally and emotionally to have more connection with your child, here are some practical steps to being an engaged and motivating parent in helping your kids to actually finish their homework:
5. Prepare a homework station for your kid.
This can show your child how willing you are to help them. Whether it is in the living area or in the bedroom, arrange the homework station so that it will be conducive for studying and not for falling asleep like being in bed. Have a desk where they can lay out their materials such as laptops, books, art materials etc., and you may also put up a cork board or a white board to put their list of tasks. It may also be a fun activity for both of you as you decorate this, or if your child prefers to do it alone, let him/her express his creativity!
6. Convince them that effective study habits can give them the freedom to do the things they actually like.
By saying the magic words “freedom to do what they want”, these can make their eyes sparkle and make them willing to agree on your terms. You may give suggestions like preparing a checklist, taking notes during lecture to finish their homework faster and easier, making study tables, charts, and review guides, and doing outlines. After some groaning about doing these tasks, you may zero in on the fact that they will have more time to be on their phones, hang out, or even surf the internet. A little reverse psychology wouldn’t hurt. You may also use these “rewards” as tools that can help them in their homework. For example, show them that internet is not just for leisure, it is also a valuable study tool. Online educational resources website like homeworkhelp.today, has made possible to get online homework help.
7. Impose reasonable rules.
Like you imposing curfew, give them reasons why they are not allowed to do certain things at certain times. Connected with effective and efficient study habits, you may tell them that during homework hours, they are only allowed to discuss actual homework stuff with their friends – then allow them to talk after, that is, before bed time. Some people also operate better with background noise. When they insist to turn the TV on or have YouTube running in the background, you may say that you are allowing it until you see them being distracted by these factors.
Open communication is the key when dealing with teenagers. When they say that they are having a hard time dealing with their homework, suggest that you can help them, or you may hire a very competent online tutoring services – this can also prove to be effective since kids are so tech-savvy nowadays and they won’t feel so much pressure compared to personal one-on-one sessions.