Homework Tips for Parents

The following has been extracted from Harris Cooper's book "The battle over homework" (2001).

1. Be a stage manager. Make sure your child has a quiet, well-lit place to do homework. Make sure the needed materials (for example, paper, pencils, dictionary) are available.

2. Be a motivator. Homework provides a great opportunity for you to tell you child how important school is. Be positive about homework. The attitude you express about homework will be the attitude your child acquires.

3. Be a role model. When your child does homework, don't sit and watch TV. If your child is reading, you read too. If your child is doing math, balance your checkbook. Help your child see that the skills he or she is practicing are related to things you do as an adult.

4. Be a monitor. Watch your child for signs of failure and frustation. If your child asks for help, provide guidance, not answers. If frustation sets in, suggest a short break.

5. Be a mentor. When the teacher asks that you play a role in homework, do it. If homework is meant to be done alone, stay away. Homework is a great way for kids to develop independent, lifelong learning skills.