Reduce Homework Stress By Focusing

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 17,769
    Education expert Ann Dolin discusses how to work with an easily frustrated child during complicated homework assignments.

    Ann Dolin: A low tolerance for frustration can make homework a battleground. If you have an easily frustrated child living under your roof, here are a few simple ideas to get them back on track. First, always encourage your child to begin with an assignment that they perceive as easy. This simple strategy puts kids in a right frame of mind from the start. Then use post-it flags to break work down into manageable chunks. Place one at the starting point and another part way through the assignment. Say to your child, all you have to do is start here and end there. Visual learners especially like this approach. In addition, some kids feel less overwhelmed when just part of the assignment is visible. Fold over the bottom portion of the worksheet or put an index card over the more difficult problems. Tell your child to complete only the visible part first. If you find that no matter what you do your child is heading towards the meltdown, take a break and then talk about a compromise. With an easily frustrated child, things go downhill quickly when parents make comments like you can do this, just focus and get it done. Instead, practice empathy. You'll be better able to help your child with empathetic comments like, I know this is hard for you, or yes, you're right, these math problems are really tough. With a few creative ideas and a whole lot of patience, you can put your easily frustrated child on the road to academic success.