The Tutoring Center, Dubai UAE

BLOG

02/02/2015
Many students try to avoid it, but teaching and learning research indicates that children who spend more time on regularly assigned, meaningful homework do better in school, and that the academic benefits of homework increase as children move into the upper grades. The key word here is meaningful. Sometimes, teachers will assign homework that doesn’t seem very meaningful, more like busywork for their students. If that’s the case with your child, just hang in there and do the best you can. It’s important to understand that if your child is behind grade level, homework will take longer than anticipated.

Parents and families play an important role in the homework process. Together, families and teachers can help children develop good study habits and attitudes in order to become lifelong learners.

Q—Why do teachers give homework?
A—Teachers use homework… 
*To help students understand and review the work that has been covered in class.
*To see whether students understand the lesson.
*To help students learn how to find and use more information on a subject.

Homework is also the link between school and home that shows what children are studying. Research shows that when homework is turned in to the teacher, graded, and discussed with students, it can improve students' grades and understanding of their schoolwork.

Q—How much time should my children spend each night on homework?
A—Most educators agree that… 
*For children in the early years of their education, homework is more effective when it does not exceed 10-20 minutes each school day; 
*Older children, in years 3-6, should be able to handle 30-60 minutes a day;
*In junior and senior high school, the amount of homework will vary by subject. Most older students will also have homework projects, such as research papers and oral presentations, that may have deadlines weeks away. They may need help organising assignments and planning study times to make sure homework is ready to turn in on time. 

Your children's teachers can tell you how much time they expect students to spend on homework. Place most concern on whether the homework is meaningful and whether, over a period of time, homework is assigned in all of the student's subjects.

Q—Can my children do homework while listening to music or watching television? 
A—Some students can work with a radio or stereo on, while others feel they work best in silence. Television can be a big problem. Many teachers ask that the television be turned off while children are doing homework. Research shows that many children on average spend far more time watching television than they do completing homework. Although it's worth noting that television can be a learning tool, it's best to leave the television off during homework time.

Q—How much help should I give?
A—This depends on each child's grade level and study habits. Younger students often need extra homework help. First, make sure the child understands the directions. Do a few problems together, then watch your child do a few. When your child is finished, check the work. Praise right answers, and show how to correct mistakes. Avoid doing your children's homework for them. Teachers need to see where your children are having trouble. One of the most helpful things you can do is to show your children that you think homework is important. Many children today do their homework while their parents are at work. When you are at home, ask to see your children's homework and discuss it with them. Ask questions and be supportive. 

Q—Do teachers really want me to ask them questions about homework? 
A—Teachers want children to learn and want parents and families to be involved in their children's education. When you stay in touch with your children's teachers, they can ease your worries and offer their own homework tips and ideas on how you can help your children learn. Meet each of your children's teachers and ask what kind of homework will be given. This is very important, even if you have children in junior or senior high school. Early in the school year and on occasion, ask teachers about your children's subjects and about homework policies. For example, ask what books your children will be using, what kinds of assignments will be given, and when the teacher is available to answer questions.

Q—What if I don't understand my child's assignment? 
A—Today's students may have subjects that you never had or that you didn't like when you were in school. You can still help your children by praising their progress, getting help from a public library or homework hotline, and talking with their teachers.

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