Many research studies have shown that a parent who is involved in their child’s education has a positive impact. It’s reflected in improved grades and test scores, strong attendance, a higher rate of homework completion, higher graduation rates, improved attitudes and behaviors in the child, as well as the child being more likely to become involved in positive extra-curricular activities. Let your child know your home is an active place of their learning.
One of the most important elements of a positive learning environment at home is structure. But how do you know what is too little or too much? If you’re too lenient or expect too little, your child may become disorganized or unmotivated. If you’re too rigid and strict, it can cause undue pressure or cause your child to feel unable to meet your expectations.
So, what’s the best way to meet in the middle and create a positive learning environment for your child at home? Here are some suggestions:
Help your child develop a work area where they can study and focus without being interrupted.
Children usually do better when they have a private study area away from interruption. If your child prefers doing their work at the kitchen table, make sure other family members understand the kitchen is off-limits during study time. Be sure your child has plenty of supplies and reference materials available and that the area has plenty of light. Regardless of its location, ensure the area is quiet and that your child can study and work uninterrupted.
Agree on a regular time for studying.
For your child’s homework routine to become a habit, schedule a set time each day for homework. One suggestion is to break study time up into smaller increments that would work better for your child than one solid period. Work with your child to find out what works best for them. In addition, be sure your child has a sufficient break between the time they arrive home from school before they sit down to work in order to decompress from their school day.
Help your child develop a method of keeping track of homework assignments.
Keeping track of homework assignments can be a difficult chore for some students. Developing a successful way of keeping track of assignments then marking them off as completed helps them develop a productive method for accomplishing tasks later in life.
Develop a positive line of communication with your child’s teacher.
Teachers are usually very willing and excited to work with an involved parent to help the child’s overall success in school. Whether it’s notes sent back and forth in your child’s backpack or an e-mail correspondence, make sure your teacher knows you’re open for suggestions as how to better assist them in the homework and study process at home.