October marks the approaching end of the first period for us at Benton Harbor Charter School Academy. As we prepare to enter this holiday season and what is often the busiest part of the school year, we wanted to share some tips we’ve found on how to keep your students engaged with their school work outside of the classroom. As winter break approaches, it’s natural for children to get distracted from what is an important part of the school year. We hope that the resources and tips listed below make homework feel like less of a daily battle and more like a routine.
Figure Out Your Students’ Needs
According to an article from Harvard’s Graduate School of Education, it’s important to pay attention to what your child’s specific habits are. For instance, do they worry about the day’s homework until it’s completed? Or do they prefer a snack and time to “unwind” when they get home? Regardless of how they prefer to work, encourage them to do their homework at their own pace and they will form their own formula for success.
Sprinkle In Some Breaks!
Another great tip comes from psychology researchers at the University of Illinois, who suggest that splitting work-time with small breaks encourages focus and attention. This study enforces the idea that brief mental distractions actually help you stay focused on a task. For parents, that can mean occasionally asking your student to spend a few minutes on their phone or work on something else as they study. Most students will jump on the opportunity to think about something else, and when they get back to their task at-hand, they should be refreshed and ready for more.
Build a Routine!
Create a schedule for when homework should be completed, set time aside to help your student with their work, or even dedicate a place in the home for homework to get completed on a normal basis. Praise your student for their efforts and not the results, as this can help calm them down when they feel overwhelmed or intimidated. Keeping true to a routine like the one mentioned above can help your student form a habit of getting their homework done both on time and successfully.
Though difficult at times, it is fully possible to help students stay on track despite the time of year. The tips and tricks mentioned above can help you provide support and encouragement while also ensuring their work gets done. Feel free to reach out and share how you keep your students motivated and timely, and keep an eye on our Facebook and our blog for more monthly updates!