The homework is difficult, the learning material a lot? Is your child overwhelmed? If you want to help your child learn, there are a few dos and many don’ts. Because some well-intentioned statements or assistance can lead to your child not feeling understood and the shot backfiring. In our article, we explain how you can help your child in a meaningful way while learning, instead of just “interfering unnecessarily”.
As a parent, you can have a positive influence on your child’s school career. Ingredients for a child’s positive access to school and homework are if you …
- Show interest,
- lovingly accompany you while learning and
- strengthen your child’s independence.
True learning success killers, however, are …
- excessive interference,
- too much control and
- resulting in conflicts around learning and homework.
The boundaries are sometimes blurred, our dos and don’ts can help you find the right tone when helping your child learn.
Do: Promote independence
- Encourage your child, “Do you think you can do this alone?”
- Appreciate your child’s independence and also let them know that you are proud of them: “It’s great that you did this on your own!”
- help to learn
- Leave your child alone with the task, but stay with them! For example, you can read something on the side or do your e-mails. Then the child knows that you are there if they need you and does not feel controlled.
- Ask questions instead of explaining yourself!
Don’t: nag, threaten, apply pressure
- It makes no sense to criticize the child for their mistakes. So avoid sentences like: “We practiced that yesterday.” This hint does not help the child.
- Avoid threats such as: “Concentrate, at last, otherwise, the exam will not work!” In the worst-case scenario, the child will be afraid of such statements or will lose the joy of learning.
Pressure and reproach are poor companions in helping your child learn. If you think you are losing patience, take a short break, and take a deep breath!
Do: Form a team with the child
Treat your child in partnership! This works if you:
- Grant the child that homework isn’t always fun: “I know you’d rather do something else.”
- leave the responsibility with the child: “You have to ask your teacher why you have to learn this.”
- Allow moaning: “If you want, you can really blaspheme about your homework. I listen to you.”
- Interrupt learning together if the child does not accept help.
- Promote the willingness to exert yourself: “It’s great that you are trying so hard!”
Don’t: meddle too much in helping to learn
- Don’t keep reminding your child about homework!
- Do not impose your help!
- Do not check homework without your child’s consent!
- Don’t dictate too much to your child: where, how, and when to do their homework, they should decide for themselves if possible.
- Only sit down with the child if they want to. You don’t have to monitor it.
Do: Create good learning conditions
- Take short breaks regularly!
- Let the child choose the place where they do their homework!
- Experiment with when to do the homework!
Don’t: doubt the child
There are some phrases that come off your lips quickly, but which are best avoided. Do not ascribe negative traits to your child! It is better to delete statements like these entirely:
- “You are such a mess!”
- “You have a memory like a sieve.”
- “Intelligent, but lazy!”
It is also counterproductive if you emphasize special talents. You are restricting your child unnecessarily. So avoid statements like these:
- “You are just more gifted with languages.”
- “Maths weakness runs in the family, you got it from me.”
If you are in the igcse programme and need helps with your homework, you can also find an IGCSE tutor to assist you.