Schoolwork: Keeping Kids on Track

“I have to feed the dog. “

“Oh, look! There is a squirrel in the yard!”

“This is too hard; I can’t do it!”

Have you heard any of these comments when you are teaching your son/ daughter? There are times when kids find every kind of excuse not to do their work. I have even had the kids volunteer to do chores they normally detest in hopes that I would forfeit their assignment.

“Haha! Nice try!” I would tell them.

So, how do you keep them on track without losing the battle or your mind?

Go over the day’s lessons and what you will be doing. We all do better if we know what will be happening.

Talk about your expectations. There are certain non-negotiable things you want from your child when doing schoolwork. This could be a good attitude, legible handwriting, etc.

Start with success. If your child is having difficulty finishing their work, it could be that they didn’t know how to do the lesson. Begin your lesson by reviewing something s/he knows. For example: If the short <e> is difficult, then review the vowels that are already know and teach to the level of success.

Do the lesson together. After you have taught the lesson, make sure you do enough of the problems that they can successfully complete the rest themselves.

Set a time to finish the assignment. Be sure that it is a reasonable time. If your daughter/son is having difficulty staying on task, redirect and set a timer.

Save it for tomorrow. If the task is not finished within a reasonable time, review the lesson the next day and see if the lesson was understood. If not, reteach, do some of the work together until they are successful and can do it independently.

Reward for completed work. We all have tasks that we don’t like to do and give ourselves a treat when we are finished (chocolate comes to mind lol). Of course, I am not talking about rewarding them for every little thing they finish, but if it has been an issue, then a small reward will help.

Praise your child. Draw attention to the fact s/he has completed their work and celebrate! It’s a big deal!

Have a great week! ~Lisa~

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