Head the Homework Wars Off at the Pass!
By Judy Molland

• Set a pattern from the very beginning. Plan a routine – any routine – as long as it’s consistent.

• Choose the time and place. Select a time that works well for everyone, and have a place to do homework that is comfortable for your child.

• Ask teachers about their homework policies. How much time should the homework take? How much involvement from parents does the teacher expect?

• Set a good example. Children are more motivated to do homework when they see parents doing homework too. You can go through the mail, read or catch up on correspondence.

• Provide supplies and resources. Keep pencils, pens, paper, assignment book and a dictionary on hand in a set place.

• Show an interest. Ask your child about class topics and assignments. Attend school activities. Be available to answer questions.

• Monitor homework. Help your child to understand assignments, get organized and structure time, but do not do the work for her.


Getting Our Kids Back on Track, by Janine Bempechat, Jossey-Bass, 2000. Offers practical advice on how to help children reach their potential.
The End of Homework
, by Etta Kralovic and John Buell, Beacon Press, 2000. Argues that homework disrupts families, overburdens children and limits learning.
How to Help Your Child with Homework
, by Marguerite C. Radenich, Ph.D., and Jeanne Shay Schumm, Ph.D., Free Spirit, 1997. Features lots of practical advice for parents.

See also: Does Homework Help Students Make the Grade?