Parenting Questions: Dealing with the stress of homework

Posted at 6:13 AM, Jan 21, 2020

Homework can often be a stressful time for both child and parent.

We find some simple tricks to keep stress levels down while trying to learn.

For Ashlie Boutte and her daughter Cameron, homework hasn't hit its peak. But that doesn't mean they don't face their share of obstacles.

"It's a little time consuming and she has to focus on a lot after school," says Ashlie. "We have to be conscious, aware and make sure we tone everything down."

At six, Ashlie says she worries about pushing her daughter too hard with after school work and studying.

"She enjoys doing it now, so I'm not too worried at this point," she says. "But it's a lot on their little minds."

Stephanie Hebert, a counselor at Mount Carmel School in Abbeville, spends her days helping students navigate their school life.

She says that while homework can become stressful for child and parent, it doesn't have to be.

"Making sure there is a structure and routine for your child so they'll know what to do expect," says Hebert. "If they are in a routine of 'we always do homework at a certain time and in a certain part of the home,' it will keep the stress down to a minimum."

And if you find your child getting stuck on the same problem over and over, Hebert says to make note of it.

Flagging the difficult problems will reduce burnout.

"Put question marks and make notes in your child's notebook. That way the teacher knows that these are things that you're child is really struggling with. That way, when they get to school the next day, the teacher can help them with those particular problems or skills."

And it's also important to make the task fun. Apply rewards like short breaks or "fun time" for the completion of portions of work.

"Know your child," Hebert says. "Every child learns differently. Some kids need movement to study. Pinterest has a lot of great resources, study games, and tricks to help you study with your child."

And if you feel the stress starting to creep in, Hebert suggests taking a step back and allowing everyone to breathe.

"How important is that A if your child is feeling anxious everyday and dreads going to schools and cries themselves to sleep at night because they're unhappy, but they have As," says Hebert. "As a parent be observant of your child. Keep in mind that your child is still a child or a teenager and they're trying to juggle so many more things than we realize."

Whether your child is just starting out or getting ready to cross the finish line, keeping stress to a minimum is key to success.