Editor's note: Here is a timely post from Edmonds Patch blogger Paddy Eger. School starts Wednesday in the Edmonds School District.
School is starting soon. Time to plan for homework. Have your kids help set up a place where they can work, and set a few ground rules along the way.
1. Set aside a special place where you can supervise/assist your kids: the corner of a kitchen table, a desk near the family evening center. Establish a family quiet hour so everyone works on quiet tasks.
It reinforces your value of student work time by your working along side them doing quiet chores: paying bills, reading a book, planning your next day's tasks. (Notice the word "quiet." Give up your TV or other media time for that hour ... or record it for later).
2. Discuss the homework goals for the evening. Help them get started and be available to help when they need direction, but let them do the actual work to the best of their ability.
3. Provide the necessary tools: paper pencils, computer, reference books, art supplies in a handy tote or on the homework desk.
4. Provide good lighting and an appropriate chair. Your kids' feet should be able to touch the floor while they work.
5. Build in a few minutes during and at the end to check over their work. Talk about the task. Make suggestions early on so they don't spend time working toward the wrong goal. No one wants to do an entire project over because they misunderstood the goals.
6. Expect your kids to pack up their own homework for returning it to school. It's their work, returning it is their responsibility.