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Help your kids with homework



A lot of parents frown at homework especially after a hard day at work, says Hellen Olukoju-Oladele, a parenting advocate and expert focused on teens. One could imagine the frustration of a working mum or dad who had a terrific day at work from dealing with a mean client to an overbearing boss, having to drive long hours in traffic back home or jumping from one bus to the other and eventually making it home in one piece, the thought of having to deal with homework can be daunting.

It takes a lot of discipline, commitment and sacrifice on the part of the parent to make out time to help their kids with homework. By the time one considers the advantages of helping out with homework, it outweighs the disadvantages and it is a worthy and rewarding investment in the long run.

Olukoju-Oladele affirms that it is necessary for parents to help their kids with homework even though there is a school of thought that says otherwise, because it may prevent kids from being independent while parents can mislead their kids, especially students in college. “To combat the above notion, parents should stick to what they know, research or ask for help for what they do not know as no man is an island of knowledge.

“Some of the reasons why parents should help with their kids’ homework include, among others: it enhances the relationship between parents and their kids, it keeps parents abreast of their child’s progress in school and be part of their growing up, parents get to read their children’s communication diary and give feedback where necessary, it also helps the child to understand the topic better, even as the parents get to know what happens between kids and their teachers/classmates.”

The parenting expert stressed that parents engaging their kids during homework helps them learn better and beyond the scope of the class, it is a personalised time with the child as opposed to when he/she is in the class with other pupils/students because the hours spent in the school and the amount of time teachers spend with them is limited bearing it in mind that individuals learn at different pace.

“Also homework is given for students to practice what they have learnt in school thereby they have more understanding of the subject matter. Constant practice is necessary mastery. This in turn affects their grades positively.”

She stressed that parents helping children with their homework also enhances their critical thinking abilities and help the kids develop positive habits towards reading and skills that can serve them throughout their lives. Parents are their kids’ first teacher and so they should be involved in their schoolwork, it helps in parent-child bonding and further shows that parents are interested in the overall well-being of their children.

“Homework time can be a moment kids get to discuss all the challenges they are having in school either with their teachers and/or classmates while the parents in turn offer advice and support where necessary. An American children author and cartoonist Dr. Theodor Seuss Geisel once said that “the more you read, the more things you will know, the more you learn, the more places you will go.”

“Therefore, homework is part of learning and parents should always provide the needed help for their kids at as at when necessary.”

Olukoju-Oladele added that parents do not have to necessarily do the homework completely for their children but should provide help, encourage, guide, motivate and make it as fun as possible (especially for the little ones) so that kids will be willing and motivated to do their homework.

In this article:
Hellen Olukoju-Oladele
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