Homework Help - York, SC

Updated on February 15, 2008
D.L. asks from York, SC
25 answers

Everyday when it comes time to do homework, it seems like I am fighting a losing battle. My eight year old seems to think there is know rush, which there isn't, but if they get it done, they can have the rest of the day to do whatever they like. Now my six year old is following his brother, and when I do actually get them to sit down and really do their homework they just don't stay focused, they get guffy. I don't want to seem like I am nagging, I understand they were in school all day, but when is enough joking around and constantly getting up, enough? Lets face it, I like joking around and laughing too, but homework needs to be taken seriously. How can I have a more positive, and productive homework time, without sounding like a nag? Help! And thank you to those of you that are welling to offer your suggestions!

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K.K.

answers from Huntington on

ok now i dont have to do this with my child yetas he is only 2 but i did have a few months when my aunts daughter lived with me for a few months without her mother and she was 7 years old.I made her do her homework as soon as she finshed her snack after school.the longer it took her to do it the less time to play and i reminded her of this.after about 2 days she stopped playing around and just got her work done and correctly so she would have lots of time to play.it worked very well and very quickly.

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S.B.

answers from Lexington on

I have two school-age girls, ages 10 and 8. As soon as the bus drops them off, they have 20 minutes for a snack or down time, like reading, no TV. Then they know it is time to do homework at 3:30. I implemented this when my oldest daughter was in 1st grade. I know it seems like a lot, but the closer to school time they do their work, the better they do and it is fresh on their mind. There is no way they could play or watch TV, then switch gears. They are usually done by 4:30 at the latest, which gives them the entire evening for whatever activities they are involved in, practices, dance class, etc. Then there is no worry about getting it done late or working on it when they are tired, close to bedtime.
Hope this helps.

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J.J.

answers from Raleigh on

It was easier for me when we set a time each day. They know after a light snack it is time for homework and after it is done they can do what they want. If I am not consistent they start to drag their feet quickly.
I have a 16 yr. old, 7 yr. old, and 18 mos. old.

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C.S.

answers from Asheville on

I would take away favorite things, like REALLY favorite things, until the work is done.

I would not nag, I would say it and leave. Nagging takes away your power and gives it back to them. Which is why they are so gleeful.

I would take the favorite thing away, be it Nintendo, the phone, the TV, the computer, FOOD, friends. PLAY HARDBALL. You can do this with great effectiveness without uttering one word. Your kids need to know who has the most power without you lifting a finger. Kids are NOT smart, their brains are not completely developed. YOUR BRAIN IS.

Devise a scheme and put it into place. Through their own figuring out, they will decide to do as you ask, if only to regain their pleasures. Be patient and watch like a tree. It won't happen in 5 minutes!

(I am a mother and grandmother -- kids in their 20s and 1 11 yr old, also a 2 yr old grandson.)

Good luck!
C., RN

1 mom found this helpful
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L.T.

answers from Memphis on

Hmm, I have a 16, 12, and 9 year old. With all three of them being in different grade levels, that seemed to be very challenging.

Maybe this will help? It may take rearranging and making a schedule, but it could work with determination and dicipline.

We have designated our kitchen as our main homework area. It's been a great gathering place. Once everyone is home, I make sure they have some kind of snack goods to snack on. Give them 20 minutes to unwind from school.

Then that is when the fun begins. lol I arranged a dry erase board as our message center along with timer, & cork board beside it to hold all the important school documents.

The goal is to get homework done and out of the way within the hour. We set the timer, and do our best to accomplish homework before the timer alarms.
(**if you finish before the timer is off, use the left over time to play learning games or study techinques on the board**)
Once the kids accomplish the homework within the hour, they have to help with a couple easy chores. Be it gather the trash, or sweep the living room. (something age appropriate)
IF all these tasks are completed for the day, they are awarded a little free time to play with friends. Or certain amount of time on X-box etc.
IF..... and only IF.. they seem to stay on task all week. Without any problems. We do something rewarding, a trip to the park, or ice cream, movies. Something..

This little system has really helped out. Nevertheless it's taken some dicipline on my part to make it happen.

YOU CAN DO IT!!

Psst..educational computer games are a blessing to!

1 mom found this helpful
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S.B.

answers from Raleigh on

Look for this book {Ending THE Homework Hassle} By John Rosemond - Understanding, Preventing, and Sloving School Performance Problems. Quite helpful.. My daughter went thru the same thing, mainly not wanting to do it and you can yell and scream and turn BLUE in the face. But all your doing is getting upset with yourself. I told her fine, but YOU TELL YOUR TEACHER WHY YOU DIDN'T DO IT... That made her do it. Got that info from the book. Plus, her teacher reccommended it. Good luck...

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L.N.

answers from Nashville on

D.,
I have a six year old and we really had a battle of wills, until I came up with a plan that seems to work for both of us.
I break up his homework into subjects or portions. He has a snack and works on one portion, then takes a break to play for 30 minutes or so (preferably outside to work out some energy!). Then he comes back in, finishes the next portion, take a break and so on. This allows short amounts of time where he can focus on his school work and he KNOWS that there will be an end to it and he will be able to go play. Since he doesn't have a great grasp on time yet, it is easy for him to relate to "when this worksheet is done and done well, then..."
Good luck!
L.

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L.S.

answers from Little Rock on

I have a checklist that I created for my children (son - 6, daughter - 2) that helps them stay focused on their daily responsibilities. It includes stuff like complete homework, make bed, eat dinner, get clothes out for the next morning, pack lunch, take bath, etc. It also has rewards like watch TV, play game boy, eat ice cream, etc. So once they are done with their work/chores, they will have time to do those other things that they like. I bought a small digital timer from Dollar Tree and I time their activities. So, they might have 15 minutes to work on their homework, or 10 minutes to take a bath, but it helps them to stay on track with their responsibilities and I don't have to keep nagging them about it. My son has really caught on to this system. I can e-mail you a copy of the checklist if you'd. I'm at [email protected]____.com this helps!

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S.S.

answers from Fayetteville on

Try giving them snacks during their homework time. Ask them if they can teach you what they learned at school that day so you can better help them. Make a bit of a game out of it. It should catch their attention a little bit better. My nephews are the same way so I sit with them and I make them snacks while they start their homework and then I ask them if they can show me how to do what they did in school that day. They get to be the teacher and I get to be the student. Sometimes I will wander off or not pay attention and my oldest nephew will grap my chin and make me look at the book. Then after we are done I ask them what they learned from our homework session. When they said that is bothered them that I wasn't paying attention to what they were saying or doing then I explain to them that is how me and your parents and teachers feel when you don't pay attention to us. You have to set a good example for them in order for them to behave the way they are supposed to. When they see you paying attention and wanting to learn then they will to.

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J.E.

answers from Lexington on

Since you are at home when they get there, let them have 30 minutes to an hour to play and get all that pent up energy out and then have a specific time that they are to sit down and do their homework and get it done before supper. If there is still more homework left to do before supper (when they get older there will be more) make sure that it gets finished after supper and then if they have time, they can play some more before bedtime. They really need a little bit of time when they get home to unwind from a long day at school, but they also need to know that they must get their homework done before supper. You just have to be firm, fair and don't waiver.

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A.D.

answers from Charlotte on

My oldest two are 12 1/2 and 8! Everyday when they come home we do snack then set a timer to have 30 minutes of free time(outside play, mp3, videos,etc..). When that timer goes off it is time to sit and do the work no ifs, ands or buts.. There is also no talking unless you have a question or need help. Be consistent in the rules you set up. We have a chore chart with the rewards and punishment for each chore, it gets no clearer than black & white. Homework is on that list and they know if they don't do it then xxx will be your punishment. Consistency is so key to parenting! Good Luck!

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B.S.

answers from Charleston on

Hi D.,
I babysit my grandsons.

One of my 2 grandsons is 8. He used to have mutiple excuses why he couldnt do his home work.

To get him to do his homework as soon as he gets home and uses the bathroom, he is given a time limit based on how much homework he has an hour etc. If the homework is done in the time limit he is given time on the computer or he is allowed to watch tv. If not done in the time limit he doesnt go on the computer for that day. He loves going on the computer and usually gets it done in the time limit.

Good luck.

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M.E.

answers from Lexington on

when i was younger, my mom had a very set home work routine for me. as soon as a i got home, i got a snacka nd a drink and then i sat at the kitchen table and did my home work. if a needed help i got it, but that did not mean some one did it for me. when i was done, soem one went over it to make sure everything was done and correct. once it was, i was able to go play with my friends until supper time. thats jsut the way it was, no use arguing about it, because the longer i took to get the home work done, the longer i had to sit at the table and the less time i had to play.

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C.D.

answers from Rocky Mount on

I had a similar situation with my son when he was 7-yrs old. I offered him choices. If you do your homework you will be allowed to, in his case, play your Nintendo, ride bike, watch t.v. If you do not do it you have to accept the consequences and the outcome depends on what you decide to do. I also told him that if he did not do the homework on the scheduled day the punishment of not being able to do the things he enjoyed so much would last a total of 5-days to start and each time that he did his work punishment would decrease 1-day. He tried me-once- (;>). Beleive it or not, it worked so well that he ususally had his work done before he left school and that practice continued until he graduated. He's thirty now with two children of his own and he still laughs about that because he said that he thought his tears would make me give in. He started with his children when they entered first grade and now his oldest (9) loves homework given by her teacher, and does work not assigned. His son (7) does his homework, no extras, but they do it without delay. There are times when they want and do procrastinate for a while but no Ninja Turtles and no Hannah Montana until homework, dinner, and bath's are done. They have gotten to the point that they tell their Dad, "Yes DA, we know, git'er done". I don't know if it will assist you but I always offered my son choices either or and made him aware of the consequences, good or bad. That was basically the only punishment he received other than as a toddler I would tell him no you can't touch that, but you can touch this. Choices worked well for me and for him. I was very lucky. My son was born in 1977 and actually was diagnosed as hyperactive. The only thing that kept him still was commercials on tv. Go figure. He was a straight A student and has never been in any kind of trouble. I am still being blessed every day.

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P.H.

answers from Louisville on

Maybe give them some time to wind down after schooland make homework time after dinner. I suppose if you wanted to be democratic about it, you could let them designate a time they prefer to do it. Some kids don't want to sit down and do more schoolwork when they just got done having to sit still all day. And your two are still kind of young to have to sit still for that many hours.

I guess you could tell them, ok, if you don't want to do your homework as soon as you get home, then you have to do it as soon as dinner is over. Those are the 2 choices, and of couse, make them stick to one or the other. I always had to do mine right after, but if it wasn't done, after dinner was where the line was drawn.

Letting them pick one of the two times will give them an opportunity to make their own choices and maybe make them feel like they have some, i don't know what word i'm looking for here, say so, in the whole situation.

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S.M.

answers from Raleigh on

Hi there, I feel your pain. We also have homework coordination "challenges" at our house. I have found loveandlogic.com to have some very helpful tips. One specific thing that I have found helpful...I do "homework" with my children. I either work on my computer, review to-do lists, filing...something just to stay busy and model the work aspect. We also try to do something fun after everything is done...even if it means just taking a walk together. Good Luck!

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J.H.

answers from Nashville on

when my 8 year old gets in from school we talk about his day while he gets a snack and then at 4:45 he has to sit down and do his homework. But during this wind down time he can not play video games the computer or have or go to friends, he basically can watch the tv for 45 min or read. he can also choose to play a game with me, but all the stuff he really wants to do has to wait until he does his homework. Sometimes he even chooses to do it before 4:45 because he wants to do an after homework activity.

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T.

answers from Chattanooga on

Separate them. Put one at the kitchen table and the other in another room. No tv or music while they do homework. Set a timer if you have to and tell them they have to finish 1 assignment before the timer goes off (or all of the work if it is not much). I would not set the timer for more than 10 minutes. Set up a routine for when they get home from school. Maybe they have a snack and then do homework right away. Maybe they are allowed to have 30 minutes of unwind time first(I would set a timer for this too). Make a routine and stick to it. Make it clear they don't get to play until the work is done. Hope this helps.

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T.R.

answers from Clarksville on

I have two suggestions. I was a middle school teacher prior to having my son (now a SAHM).

One - give your children a small break when they get home, and possibly a snack. Set a timer so that they know when they have to start homework. Set the timer again for a short period say 20min. Let them have a break for 5 and then back again if needed. Kids at this age really need breaks or they will loose their focus and create their own breaks- that is what you are seeing. It is possible they are overstimulated from school the bus ride... back home and adjusting to the difference between the two. If you stay firm, but give a little leeway for them to make choices they will feel a little more in control. Also, try to make it fun. Work with them if you can make a game of the homework do it. If they like music and can focus with it on-- play some songs. While I was teaching my students got the most work done with less nonsense when I played music.

Secondly - if nothing works you might try alternating homework times, or putting the children in different areas while they work.

Homework is important, but helping a child learn to love learning is more important. Keep that in mind the next time you get really frustrated. Help them not to dislike homework or you may be in for many more battles--

Good Luck

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N.B.

answers from Raleigh on

there are several things you can do to help your children to focus...
the most important is to TURN OFF THE T.V AND COMPUTER!!!!
these electronic devices wreak havoc on childrens brains and keep them wired...
you need to write down a daily schedule and keep to it...ie.
...go to school
....after school break for 30 minutes (run around lots!)
.....homework with a fruit and vegetable snack, homemade is best with lots of love....NO SUGAR!!!!!
....dinner (everyone helps)
baths
reading together
bed

do this schedule for 2 weeks and you will see huge improvement!

peace
ninabe

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S.A.

answers from Raleigh on

my 7 year old and I battled over homework all through kindergarten and when he started first grade... I really wondered if I could battle him for 12 more years....

I talked to his teacher because it was taking him HOURS to do work that should have been done in 20 minutes or less.

She suggested an egg timer set to 15 minutes - and at first we had an arrangement that he didnt actually have to FINISH the homework - **IF** he worked on it consistently for the 15 minutes. if he was distracted or argued with me, I added a minute to the timer. The first few days he didn't finish the homework but worked very hard on it knowing that he was done for the day when the timer went off. After the first week, I started setting the timer to 20 minutes and noticed he was actually completing all of the work. After a couple of weeks, he was finishing the work (and it was neat and correct) before the timer ran out. it really helped for him to know that there was an end to the dreaded homework. As his assignments get more complicated (projects, reports, more math, etc) I've had to add more time to the timer, but he still likes to race against the timer and see if he can complete his work correctly before time runs out.

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M.B.

answers from Raleigh on

Hi, I don't know if this will work with you but it works with my son, aged 10. When we come home from school, I ask him how many minutes he wants to have before starting homework. Usually his answer is 30 minutes, he gets a snack, goes to the bathroom, plays a game, etc. I set the timer on the stove and when it goes off, he starts doing his work. He doesn't get to do anything else until he finishes his work. Once he is finished, he can play or watch TV or whatever he wants to do. No more battles....
Good luck,

M.

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R.M.

answers from Chattanooga on

Make a routine. FOLLOW it. If you don't follow the routine, this won't work. Here's what I do, if it's good weather out, let them play outside for 30-45 minutes, then make them come inside, it helps to burn of excess energy and also will help them concentrate. Next, fix them a quick snack, I usually go with fruits, veggies or about a 1/3 of a bag of popcorn for each of them. Then you sit them down and make them work. If they won't work, take away a game. If that don't work, they can't leave the table until it is done. Hope this helps!

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J.R.

answers from Johnson City on

you didn't say when "homework time" is..is it right after school or have they had a chance to play w/friends first or have a snack..time to relax and goof off..etc..involve them in deciding when to do their homework..make sure there are no distractions..(tv on or loud music playing) and be available to "help them"..if one child is purposely a distraction then relocate him to another part of the house and if one finishes first because the other has been a distraction then reward the child who finishes his homework in a timely manner

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W.C.

answers from Lexington on

I have a 6 yr old... We come home, have a snack, 30 minutes of free time, and then homework time - which is always done at the kitchen table.

You won't be able to get the younger one inline unless the elder brother is first, tho....

Good luck!

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