Does homework end in tears?

Does homework end in tears?

Most schools have a homework policy, which has been prepared in consultation with the parents, to give a guideline as to how much homework is expected. Many schools assign little homework if any in Junior and Senior Infant classes.

As a general guide the following times may help:

  • 1st and 2nd class 20 -30 mins
  • 3rd and 4th class 30 - 40 mins
  • 5th and 6th class 40 - 60 mins

Most schools do not give homework at weekends and many do not give homework on Fridays. Occasionally a child may have a homework voucher, this is a free pass from homework, some teachers give this for excellent work/behaviour or for birthdays.

Parent's homework tips

  • Set aside a place for your child to do the homework, e.g. kitchen table.
  • Make sure that younger children are at the correct height for writing, use a booster seat from the car if necessary.
  • Turn off the TV and eliminate as many distractions as possible.
  • Have a 'homework box' with pens, rulers, pencils, calculators etc. This saves time looking for items in the bottom of the bag or around the house.
  • Check the journal and sign it. Be consistent, do this every night.
  • Praise for effort, getting finished on time, neatness etc.
  • Help your child monitor mistakes, tell them they are learning opportunities, everyone makes mistakes.
  • Try not to do homework late at night when the child is tired

Avoid confrontation, if they do not want to do the homework when they come in from school ask them to decide on a time and stick to it or offer them a choice of time that suits.

If your child is having difficulty talk to the teacher as soon as possible. If the work is too difficult the teacher needs to know. If it is taking too long perhaps the teacher can cut back on the number of sums, spellings etc.

Why the homework ends in tears

Parents are frustrated that it takes so long after a long day. Don't tackle homework as soon as you come in the door, spend time talking to your child about the day, have a coffee, and leave it a while.

Stick to the allocated time, write in the homework diary how long the homework takes so the teacher can adjust the amount of work.

Your child may have extra work from the resource teacher as well as the class teacher. Speak to the teachers about what are the most important pieces to do and try and agree to keep to the time.

If you would like to establish the SMART Homework system with your child contact us for an appointment today. We can demonstrate the SMART homework system to you and your child, showing you how to avoid conflict, get finished faster while encouraging your child to learn, in one or two sessions.

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Hello, I’m Mary O'Dowd

Mary O'Dowd

Education Consultant

Mary is a registered qualified teacher with over 38 years’ experience and over 20 years’ experience in helping children with specific learning difficulties. She is qualified and registered with the British Psychological Society to carry out educational testing. An expert in dyslexia, she has lectured in Ireland and overseas. In 2005 Mary O’Dowd set up SMART Education to provide educational assessments, consultations, tutorials and workshops for students aged 4 to 18 yrs.

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