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Find a place for your child to work that is well-lit and free from distractions.
Whether this is the kitchen table or at a desk, make sure your child has enough space to spread out their things and sit comfortably.
Stationary items should be close to hand – why not give your child ownership over getting out and putting away the pencil pot? Create a work area where your child can sit quietly and really focus.
Knowing when homework or revision time is each day can really help children develop a routine. If you have a large clock at home you could try adding a sticker to show when homework/reivision time will be. You can then give your child the responsibility of checking the clock.
Choosing when this study time will take place is totally up to you but do bear in mind your child’s age and energy levels.
Will they have better concentration straight after getting home from school?
Would they benefit from having a break, knowing that the half an hour before dinner is always set aside for study?
Even if your weekday schedule varies, you could assign this time to always follow a specific activity e.g. study time is after snack time.
Look at the homework and revision together and work out a plan for how you will split it into easier sections. For example, if your child has increased reading homework over the weekend, ask them to count the total number of pages required. Then you can write down a plan for how many pages they will read on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Stick this somewhere central (the kitchen fridge is a good spot!) and have your child tick off each day as they complete the section.
For older children, come up with a work/break schedule they can run themselves. Give your child a kitchen timer and have them set it for fifteen minutes. They agree to fifteen minutes of focused work, followed by 15 minutes break, before returning to the task for another 15 minutes.
This is how they will learn, and how the teacher will monitor their understanding.
If you think your child is rushing their work and making mistakes through haste rather than misunderstanding, encourage them to read through what they have written. Try asking for more detail about specific points, or question ‘what does this part mean’?
Let you child know you are there if they have questions, but that you can’t answer everything – the thinking part is up to them.
Show your child that you are taking note of how they work, as well as being interested in their completed work.
Have they focused really well without getting distracted this week?
Tried sounding out a difficult word on their own first?
Written an especially vivid description?
Don’t forget to praise good efforts. Your child is more likely to stay motivated if they feel you are involved and are noticing when they do a good job.