Tackling the homework: Tips to succeed this school year

Children often have different learning styles. (WCHS/WVAH)

Often times a student's day isn't finished when he or she gets home from school.

With clubs and sports and even homework a student has a lot to juggle.

Sylvan Learning Center in Charleston has ways to help you and your child stay on top of the workload.

"The homework today does not seem to be getting done is the big thing, and a lot of children don't do their homework,” said Rosemary Peterson, Director of Education at Sylvan Learning Center in Charleston. “I firmly believe that if the homework is done, the lowest grade that the child will ever get is a C."

Staff at Sylvan Learning Center in Charleston said parents need to know what's expected of their child and get organized early on.

"Each school has requirements that they ask the students to follow, and every school has a website for middle school and high schoolers to follow,” said Lisa Henthorn, Sylvan Learning Center Director. “You don't want to find out a month into school that your child has six zeros. You want to daily track assignments."

Some other tips Sylvan suggests is creating a homework zone that is quiet and free of distractions, knowing your child's learning style, organizing folders or binders for each class, and staying on top of the homework that's assigned.

"I work mainly with the math and science students, and I know, especially with those kinds of subjects, it's really easy to get behind. If you don't understand one concept, the next concept is only going to get more difficult because they keep building on those old skills,” said Christian White, Homework Support Tutor at Sylvan.

A study-buddy can also be helpful for students in high school and all the way down to those in elementary.

"If your child has come home and has forgotten his or her spelling words, 'I don't remember what page my math homework is,' you should have someone who you can email, text or call to find that out,” Henthorn said.

Sylvan also suggests setting goals and using positive reinforcement to help your child succeed.

Here is the list of homework help tips suggested by Sylvan Learning Center:

  1. Set goals – help your child set attainable goals for each class.
  2. Know your child – children have different learning styles and academic needs. “Children learn in at least eight different ways, according to the Multiple Intelligences Theory: visually, verbally, physically, mathematically, musically, naturalistically, through group activity or through quiet thinking time.”
  3. Create a homework zone – set up an area with study materials like a dictionary, paper and pens. Make sure the area is free from distractions.
  4. Develop class files – a color-coded file for each class will help separate homework assignments, exams and projects making it easier for your child to refer back to the materials to study for tests.
  5. Set weekly milestones – setting short timelines on a calendar will help ensure projects and studying aren’t left until the last minute.
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