Homework in Kindergarten - Hope Mills,NC

Updated on October 19, 2010
K.P. asks from Franklin, TN
23 answers

Hey Mamas,

So, my son is in Kindergarten and already has homework every night. I personally don't think this is developmentally appropriate, but that is not related to my question. My questions is, when do you have your kids do their homework? I realize if you work, it is likely after dinner. I'm currently a SAHM, and so are the other moms in our neighborhood. The other moms have their kids do their homework immediately after school. While my son has no difficulty concentrating in school or otherwise, he does seem to have trouble doing so immediately after school. When he gets home he wants a snack and then he wants to PLAY. He needs to recharge after a long day at school, and is frustrated none of his friends are available to play. We've tried doind homework after school, but he gets frustrated easliy and some days it ends of being too much of a battle.

So, tonight we are trying it after dinner. However, he will have no time to play with friends. In fact, they have no time to play. After homework they have to get ready for soccer, football, etc. I thought unstructured free play was important for elementary school kids? When do you have your kids do their homework? Any suggestions?

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answers from Gainesville on

My son is in kinder too and they have homework M-T and I have no problem with it. He is learning so much! We get home, have a snack, some downtime, then I have him start his homework while I'm cooking. He sits at his small table in the kitchen so I'm right there working on it with him.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Anchorage on

If its nice out, if the other kids are out, we wait to do HW so he can play, but if there is nothing going on he does it right away so he can play later, or if he has an activity we try to do it before we have to leave.

2 moms found this helpful

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answers from Las Vegas on

I have learned through practice and error that the best schedule for us is:

Come home from school
Have a snack
Do homework
Then you can play or watch t.v.

If we hold off on doing home work until later in the evening, then we run the risk of forgetting about it, the children being too tired and grumpy to do it, or having this big time crunch at the end of the night with bath time and all.

How much homework is your child receiving each night. When my daughter was in kindergarten last year, she only had to do the front and back of one worksheet. Only took her about 10 minutes. Maybe your son's school is more demanding.

6 moms found this helpful


answers from Pittsburgh on

My son also got homework every night Mon-Thurs in Kindergarten. At best, it gets them into the routine of things to come :-)

Works best for us after school, after a small snack/drink.
10 minutes takes O. hour if we wait too long so we're kind of training him to get crack-a-lackin on it right away. Makes for a happier house here.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Saginaw on

We do ours after dinner. My kids are in 1st and K and they also need some recharging time after school. They like a snack and to play outside or watch some cartoons for a little bit. Then we usually eat and we do homework after that. It works good for us.



answers from Lexington on

How long does it usually take him to do the homework? When I was teaching the rule of thumb was 10 minutes of homework per grade--so 10 minutes for 1st graders, 20 for 2nd graders, and so on. I can't imagine more than 5 or 10 minutes for a kindergartener, if that much. If it's more, you really should talk with the teacher.



answers from Denver on

I too have a HUGE issue with homework in K. Huge. I talked to my DD's teacher and she didn't believe in HW either for such young children, especially after sitting in class for 7 hours. (the principal requires it) After volunteering for hours in her class I realized there is so much, do this, do that, sit here, be still, be quiet all day long that my child needed to run, scream, play and have a few minutes where someone isn't telling her what to do when she got home.

So with her teacher, we came to the agreement that if homework was completed by her, great. If not, it doesn't go against her. Her teacher fully supported a chance for DD to unwind a bit. She typically did HW as I was making dinner....she'd sit at the kitchen table and I'd be in the kitchen and we could work together.

Now that she's in 1st. it works much better for her to wait until after dinner.

Just between you me, and everyone on the internet, I'd talk to her teacher to see how much emphasis you need to be putting on the HW. And then worry about scheduling it in. GL!



answers from Pittsburgh on

Wow-homework in Kindergarten? Mine never got one day of HW in K and we are one of the top school districts in our state.

My best advice is to let him do it whenver is best for him. Some kids like to get it over with and do it right away and others prefer to wait. My kids like to wait so we do it at night. I feel that after a long day at school they deserve a break if they want it.



answers from Charleston on

How long does it take him to do homework? MY 5YO daughter has 10 minutes of homework 4 days a week sometimes its more like 5 and I let her do it while she is eating her snack after school. Then she has about 2 hours of free play then dinner then 2 hours of cheerleading practice (M W F ) then home, bath, bed. She likes to get it done as soon as she gets home so she can go outside and play. I just said to her that she cant go outside till its done. I have nieces who are a few years older and thats the rule for them and DD knows that, so she has to realize it will be like that for the rest of her school career she needs to get used to it now. You just have to put your foot down and tell him sorry you do your homework first then play time later. If he has more then a few minutes of work Id talk to the teacher though cause it may be just to much.



answers from St. Louis on

everybody needs a break, so we did snack - playtime/free time - & then homework has to be done before dinner time.

During elementary school, my son had about 2 1/2 - 3 hours to fill before dinner. Now that he's in Middle School clubs & sports, that timeframe is down to 1-2 hours (depending on the day).

We are sticking to the "before dinner" rule, because there are so many activities in the evening....Scouts, religion school, sports, etc. Hope this helps!



answers from Boston on

I'm a sahm my son gets to have a snack and play for about 30 minutes or so usually outside so he can really burn some energy then its homework. He is in third grade and has reading one night and math another night and his spelling packet is due on Friday. My son has soccer on Tuesday and Thursdays and cubscouts on Wed. and most of his good friends are on his soccer team and also in cubscouts with him so he gets plenty of time to see his friends outside of school plus I have no problem on a Monday doing homework later if he wants a friend over or having someone over on the weekend. Homework should not take that long only 30 minutes or so I never let my son go over an hour if it takes longer then that I send a note into the teacher with his unfinished work.



answers from Augusta on

we do homework after school and a snack. if I let them play before homework is done homework will never get done.
Both of my kids have had and do have homework in Kindergarten , we are in one of the best school districts in the state.



answers from Nashville on

My son is in 1st grade but even in K he had homework every night except Fri. It does not take more than 15-20 mins though. In our home we set the rules that homework is done immediately following school or it would not get done. Kids need structure and doing it when he says, is not structure. I would say to give him a snack when he gets home and right after the snack he is to do his homework so he is done in time to play with the other neighborhood kids. If he has too much homework, more than 30 mins, I would either talk to the teacher about that, or in the meantime, I would let him do 15 mins, take a 15 min break, then finish. We feel that once you get your homework done, the rest of the afternoon and evening is yours to do as you wish. We don't want to break up the day with play, then homework b/c it will be harder to get back to. My son just knows that when he gets home it is bathroom, wash hands, snack, then homework. There is no room for argument b/c that is what it is. On occasion for something special he gets to play or do whatever first then he has to do homework while we cook dinner. I too believe in free play. ;o)


answers from Austin on

In Kinder through about 5th...daughter always came home, had a snack and then started homework. She usually finished it.. As she got older sometimes, she wanted a 30 minute break to "flop out and watch tv or get online".. then she would do her homework.. She knew school was her #1 priority,..Once she was in 5th grade, I never asked, because she knew she would always have homework..



answers from Charlotte on




answers from Chattanooga on

I have mine do it after dinner. Though my children are not interested in doing all those other things like school sports and such so its easier sometimes



answers from Nashville on

My daughter usually does her homework in her after school program. We;ve found that if she at least makes an attempt to start her homework there, she can finish it at home. But with Girl Scouts and dance classes also in the mix, usually she'll just complete her homework right after school. She understands that she can not go outside to play until homework in finished and put away.



answers from Minneapolis on

My son gets off the bus at 4:20. He has to have homework done before dinner at 6pm. He usually plays outside for 15-20 minutes immediately upon exiting the bus. Then he comes in for a snack. It works best if he then starts his homework and just gets it done so he can enjoy some time to play before and after dinner. We limit after school activities (just one night a week after dinner for Cub Scouts) because he doesn't have enough energy left after a long school day. He needs the free play time to recharge. If he waits to do homework after dinner he is too tired. Try a couple ways (I know some kids are morning kids and can do homework right after breakfast) to see what seems to work best for your kiddo and then stick to it. We use incentives like getting time after dinner to go out and play catch or ride his bike with us if his homework is done on time. That seemed to help him get used to doing it.



answers from Dallas on

My son is in first grade and had homework 2 or 3 nights a week in K. When we get home from school(I'm a sahm), he has a snack and we look through his folder and talk about his day for a few minutes. Then we do his homework and after that he is free to play, watch some tv, etc. We don't have any neighbors his age to play with so it is his little brother or he plays by himself(or sometimes we'll all play a game together) which I think is a good thing. Kids need to be able to entertain themselves for a while each day. I think you should see what works best for your son. Maybe he can have a snack and then have a "recess" for 30 minutes and then do homework. If I waited until after dinner, we'd all be too tired for homework, but that's just us. A lot of my son's friends' time is taken up with sports and other lessons, but I agree with you about just having time to play. My son is only allowed one sport and one other non-sport activity per week and we prefer those to be held on the weekends, if possible.



answers from New York on

Hi K.,

At that age, I allowed my kids an hour to play after their half day at school and 40 minutes on the bus before starting their homework. They were really not ready to sit down and work again right after coming home from school. It is fine to give him a break when he comes home, the frustration over not being able to have playdates after school is something that he'll just need to deal with. Homework should not take that long - a kindergartener should not have more than 20 minutes of homework. If he does, that is the problem.



answers from Chicago on

We have a second grader and a kindergartner. After dinner one does homework while the other takes a bath. Then, #2 takes a bath and the other does his/her homework. That has worked well for us. Nights that we do not take baths, they both do homework after dinner.



answers from New York on

My 2 children always do their HW in the afternoons. When they get home from school we have a snack together and talk about their day. After about 30 minutes of this, they are ready to get changed and get their work done. I find if they wait much longer, they are no longer in "school mode" and less inclined to want to get their assignments done. But every child is different! If your son really needs more time to unwind, so be it, but I would maybe set a timer and let him know there is a limit to the unwinding. I agree that kids are so structured today there is little time for play, but the discipline of getting work done and THEN relaxing as a "reward" will serve him well in the future. Unfortunately, as the years go by, the work only gets harder and increases in volume - the study habits you set in place today will definitely help him as he progresses through school. Good Luck!



answers from San Francisco on

With my oldest child, it is immediately when we get home. This works well for him. With my second, he complains so I give him about 45 minutes to unwind.
(However, just as I was about to hit 'post' and then help him with his homework, he announced, "I'm done!" I asked him what he was done with and he said, "My homework!" ) So I guess it depends on the day with him.

I think your answer is really what works best for your family.

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