Saturday, August 18, 2007

Learning Style Homework Tips

Learning Style Homework Tips

Homework can be a tricky area for parents. How do you prevent it from turning into a battlefield? Learning styles, in particular the learning style of your child, holds many of the answers.

Children, especially holistic children, need to know why they have to do homework. What’s the benefit of doing something at home that you’ve just done in class? How does homework fit into the general scheme of their education? Explain to your children that homework is important to reinforce skills that have been taught at school. It also gives teachers a chance to monitor the students’ progress. If the children allow it, homework can also be a great way to learn to work independently!
Analytic children, on the other hand, probably aren’t as interested in the big picture. If they refuse to do homework, it’s probably because the task at hand seems too big and they have trouble breaking it into manageable details. Help them organise the work into step-by-step portions and sub-tasks. Create a list of all the things that have to be done that day and let the child tick them off as they go along.
If you’re not sure whether your child is holistic or analytic, please take the quick test by clicking on this link:

Bear in mind that you need to set up an appropriate environment and atmosphere for doing homework. Setting aside a specific place to do homework is a good idea (please see the tips on how to create an optimal study environment), but again, for some children this may be a quiet corner, while for others it could be the family room with the music on and papers strewn everywhere. Also, children who thrive on variety (see their LSA results) might like the study area moved or redecorated several times a month.

Some children like to have parents involved in their school life and in their homework. This doesn’t mean that parents do the work that their children are supposed to do - showing interest in what your child is learning at present and what their assignment involves may be enough. Your child might like you to give them a quick test at the end to see that they’ve understood the work. Other children, however, may have a different learning style, one that is conducive to working without parental supervision.

Setting a specific time for doing homework works well if you can tailor it to your children’s “time of day” preference based on their LSA results, but you have to be realistic about what you have available: if your child’s preference is for early morning learning, this will usually clash with the school’s timetable during the week, and you might not want to pile every weekend morning with homework!

If your child has a strong preference for morning learning, and a strong non-preference for afternoon and evening learning, you might have to discuss this with the teacher. Show them the child’s LSA report and ask how you can work together to combat the homework blues.

To check your children’s LSA results, here is that link again:

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