After Back-to-School: Dealing with More Homework

Coping with the Stress of More Homework

There’s been heated debate around whether or not today’s students have too much homework. Regardless of opinions, an increased workload is something that your school-age child will have to cope with as they get older.

Here’s how you and your child can adjust to the homework-specific changes that come with each new school year, plus resources for coping with the stress that many students and their families feel when it comes to getting homework done.

  

The importance of a homework routine

Your child might resist the idea of a homework routine, but having a schedule is one of the most effective ways to ensure homework gets done before the due date. A homework routine is about more than just choosing a time to do homework each night, too:

  • Where will homework be done? Help your child create a productive and appealing study area, much like you would your own home office.

  • Keep all of the necessary supplies easily accessible in the study area.

  • Will certain subjects be tackled first? Some students do best when the most difficult subjects are completed first, others benefit from easier “wins” based on their strongest subjects.

  • Encourage the use of a homework calendar. This could be in a planner, on a whiteboard, or a large calendar that sits on the desk.

  • Take breaks when needed — a 5 to 10 minute break can do wonders for mental clarity.

  • Make yourself available for homework help when needed.

It’s important that your child feels in control of their routine, too. Good study habits are important for college and even future careers, but each child’s habits will look different based on their unique strengths.

  

The consequences of not doing homework

Some children are intrinsically motivated to do their homework. Others aren’t, but appropriate consequences can help. You might restrict participation in a favorite activity based on grades, or try a reward-based system for good grades. Some schools also implement their own consequences, especially in high school.

For more tips on dealing with homework battles, read this article. Mary Leonhardt, the article’s author, makes a point that’s worth remembering: Sometimes, a lack of motivation to get homework done can be due to underlying issues, and those need to be discovered and addressed.

  

Teaching your school-age child about handling stress

Students often feel stressed and overwhelmed by the amount of homework they receive. You can’t control the amount of homework each teacher assigns, but you can use these times as an opportunity to teach your child how to handle stress in a healthy way.

  

Helpful resources for dealing with the stress of homework

If your child is feeling stressed out by the amount or difficulty of their homework, these additional resources can help you understand how to best help:

5 Ways to Deal with Your Kid’s Homework Challenges

7 Tips for Helping Your Child Manage Stress

12 Tips to Reduce Your Child's Stress and Anxiety

5 Ways to Beat Back to School Stress

Constructing an Anxiety Toolbox