Help! My child won’t do their homework or study!
Students not wanting to complete their homework or study is one of the most common issues we see in the tutoring industry – you are not alone!
An unwillingness to complete school tasks can stem from a wide variety of causes, ranging from a lack of confidence in academic ability, right through to preferring to play video games rather than study!
Whatever the reason, there are many approaches that can help students commit to, and complete, their school tasks.
Create a positive learning environment
Involve your child in creating a space for learning in the home. This can be as elaborate as decorating a study room, or as simple as clearing some space on the dining room table. Alternatively, purchase some inexpensive post-its and highlighters to make study at the library more comfortable and fun.
How can a tutor help? STN tutors have a variety of skills and ideas to help create a positive learning environment, no matter your space or budget.
It’s all about attitude
When talking to your child about school work, make sure you use positive and supportive language. Frustrated parents can often resort to language such as “Just get it done!”, or “You’ll fail if you don’t buckle down!” While this may be effective for some students, often it can attach a negative tag to school work and make it appear as a punishment. Instead, try to ask engaging questions such as “How’s your science assignment going? Volcanoes are really interesting”, or make note of the student’s strength and abilities, for example, “You’re so good at video games, I’m sure your computer assignment will be really good”.
How can a tutor help? STN tutors foster appropriate and positive language when interacting with students; they also work to find how to relate most positively to the individual student.
What’s the point?
For older students approaching graduation, they often use “What’s the point” talk to evade completing work they don’t like. For example, “What’s the point of studying maths when I want to be a fashion designer?” This can often be a good opportunity to remind students of the skills they learn through schooling. These skills include discipline, accountability, independence etc. and are invaluable in future study as well as careers in everything from professional dancing to the armed forces.
How can a tutor help? STN tutors are excellent mentors; with a broad range of study disciplines, careers and life experience, they can provide insight into the many pathways that a good education can lead.
Create a routine
Even if a child does not like completing a task, once it becomes routine, they will generally complete it. Take, for example, brushing their teeth; at first it can be an uphill battle! But after time, it becomes routine. Study and homework is no different. Try to create a routine homework/study time for your child; involve them in the creation of this time – something regular that fits in around their other activities. Perhaps even create a weekly timetable that you can help them check and adhere to – ticking off sessions as complete can be very satisfying for both students and parents alike!
How can a tutor help? Having a regular tutoring session can help create a routine for study, and provide a good time to tackle those more difficult study topics that students struggle with.