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Homework Time: Ways to Unwind and Set Your Kids Up For Success

homework time    Ah, yes, it’s that time!

Homework time. Either your kids are excited and ready to dive right in, or they dawdle and find ways to put it off. As soon as the kids come home, the afternoon becomes a juggling act of sports, dinner, homework, and bedtime.

Homework time rituals can be fun. After some trial and error at my house, I’ve found this to be the best schedule for my child:

Eat–Move–Organize–Begin.

Eat. The bus ride home is long, and even on those “Walker” days, kids have long burned off their lunches. They need to eat, and eat NOW! So, get out those healthy snacks. We usually have veggies and some protein. It’s amazing how things like beets, sweet potatoes, cucumbers, and olives go well with almonds, cheese, or yogurt. They feel like a treat for kids, and you feel happy they’re eating something fresh.

Need snack ideas? Check out Erin’s Healthy Kid Snacks for some inspiration.

Move. After snack, it’s time to play. Preferably outside. Ride bikes, climb a tree, or walk the dog. Have an hour play date, or go to the park. We all know that even ten minutes of moving around makes you energetic. And it’s another basic need to tick off before hitting the homework.

Looking for a new park to try? See Krysten’s Favorite Playground List.

Organize. A clean surface, good lighting, and the right supplies. Sharpen those pencils, find that ruler, and get the folders and books out of the backpacks. I love watching my son gather his things, because I can see him focus and take responsibility. It’s also a great transition for the work ahead.

Heading to the library for homework? Don’t miss Allison’s Guide to Seacoast Libraries.

Begin. Be around your children while they work. Some kids want mommy right there, while others need space. But being there lets them know you’re available and ready to help if they struggle. One of the best parenting tips I got for homework time was from one of my son’s teachers. She said that when you see a child staring into space for too long or otherwise losing focus, simply walk over and point to the next question on the page. This nonverbal cue helps them redirect, and it works wonders.

Want to try a new homework enriching website or resource? Check out my Top 10 Homework Resource Guide.

 

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