Most children go through a phase when they don’t want to do their homework; hopefully, it will last for no more than a few weeks. However, if it does become a regular problem and you are concerned that their grades are going to take a nosedive, there are a few ways that you can get them back on the right track. This should be without a need to micro-manage your child, or to fight with them.
Start as you mean to go on
If your child has only just started to avoid doing his homework, it may be because you have never taken much notice of whether he is completing it or not. That may be because he has always just got on and done it, or there may not have been very much to do before. Ideally, the earlier you start to put a homework schedule in place and discuss the importance of homework with your child, the better. Homework can seem pointless, particularly in subjects that don’t interest him, but completing tasks out of school can work wonders for his self-discipline. It really does have long-term advantages, so you should explain this to him.
Set up a routine
A homework routine is one of the best ways to get your child to do his homework without a fight. If he gets used to getting home from school, doing an hour’s homework and then eating his dinner, you should be able to get him to do it without any pressure whatsoever. Work around your child’s extra-curricular activities and, if he enjoys playing with his friends immediately after school, compromise by agreeing to let him do his homework after dinner. If your family doesn’t always eat together, encourage all members to sit down at one time. If you do that, your child can’t suggest eating later and putting off doing his homework.
Find out what the issue is
If your child seems to be having serious problems with his homework, there is probably a reason for it. It could be that he is struggling in a particular subject; perhaps because he doesn’t like the teacher, or he just doesn’t have an aptitude for that particular subject. However, it could be a more all-encompassing reason, such as changes in family life or friends and hobbies that are leading him astray. Don’t presume that you know everything about your child. Particularly if he is in his teens, he is likely to hide certain things from you. Sit him down and try and get to the bottom of his difficulties with homework. Then try to find a workable solution.
Provide somewhere conducive to working
Many children these days have their own television, computer, Xbox and other gadgets in their bedrooms. That can be a blessing when you want them out from under your feet for a couple of hours. However, when it comes to getting their homework done, it may not be such a good idea. You can try banning your child from playing or watching anything until his homework is done, but unless you want to keep paying random visits to his room, it probably won’t do much good. Instead, appoint another room that can be used, such as the dining room or a study. Without distractions, he will get his homework done much more quickly.
Check that they are completing tasks
If your child is still very young, it may be a good idea to sit down with him while he does his homework. Perhaps you can do something yourself, such as checking your household budget or completing some work of your own while he does his homework. That way, you are around if he needs any help. However, as children grow up, they need to get used to doing homework without any prompting. Instead of standing over your child, ask for proof that he has done it, or, if necessary, get in touch with his teachers at school to see how he is doing. When he does complete tasks, ensure that you praise and reward him as necessary.
Fighting with your child over getting his homework done isn’t conducive to achieving the objective. Hopefully, by avoiding argumentative confrontation, you will be able to encourage him to complete his homework to the best of his ability.