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Kidsource Calendar/Homework Helper

Activities & Resources for Parents of School-Age Children

An Overview


Younger children don't want to feel left out, so set up a space at the kitchen table for your little one to do "homework" while your older children do theirs. Get out the crayons and paper, glue sticks, and age-appropriate scissors. Get creative!


How Important is Homework?

Assigning homework serves various educational needs. Find out what the U.S. Department of Education says about homework in this article.


Be an Involved Parent

Parents and schools need to work together so all children can succeed in school. Read how.


Ten Tips

Ten Homework Tips can make your life easier. And your child's!


Distraction-Free Zone

Be sure your child has a homework space that is free of clutter and distraction. If he or she likes music, put on Vivaldi or Bach. Turn off the TV, even if your child can't see it. Eliminate background noise as much as possible.


Don't Forget the Library

There is a tremendous amount of information available on the Internet, but don't forget to expose your children to the library. Visit your neighborhood library, as well as an occasional trip to a larger county or university library. If your child has difficulty studying at home, make a visit to the library a regular study stop.

Elementary School



Turn off the television.


After School Care

If your child is in after-school care, carefully work out a time schedule for homework that doesn't stress you or your child. Can some of the "easier" work be done at the after-school program? Then save time for the more difficult homework to be done with mom or dad nearby for support.


Free Time

If you find that there's free time in the evenings, bring out the board games, cards, or books. It's family time!



Does your child love doing math word problems? Or does he need a little extra practice? Check out MathStories.com, math for the internet generation.



Determine exactly what the teacher's expectations are, especially for your younger child (K-3). Some parents want and demand homework, others don't. Find out if the teacher is trying to appease parents, if there's flexibility, or if it's a rigid requirement which will affect grades.


Reward System

If your child is one to kick and scream (figuratively speaking) at the idea of doing homework, find a reward system that will help him to get in gear--and stay there.

Middle School


Math League Help Topics

A great math resource for fourth through eighth grade students. Math League Help Topics


Monday through Thursday

Try banning television Monday through Thursday. If there are shows that are important, tape them for weekend viewing.


Writing a Research Paper?

Check out Researchpaper.com, a collection of topics, ideas, and assistance for school-related research projects. It includes the Writing Center, designed to help improve the style and presentation of reports.


Parental Support

As children get older and more independent, it's still important to be nearby offering support and encouragement during long homework sessions.


Study Groups

Some students do really well in a study group, while others need to be alone. Help your child figure out which works best, and ensure that it happens. If a study group is ideal, be sure everyone is on a similar level so that one student doesn't carry the load for the others.


On the Tip of Your Tongue

Can't find just the right word? Try Thesaurus.com.

High School and Beyond


Study Tips site

Students of higher education worldwide have one thing in common: they need the best study techniques possible in order to achieve success in academics. Check out the Study Tips, Strategies, & Techniques site.


Teen Hoopla

Check out Teen Hoopla, an internet guide for teens. It has book reviews (written by teens), links to other sites, and a teen discussion board.


USGS Learning Web

The United States Geological Survey has a wealth of information accessible on their web site.


Smithsonian Institution

Although it's not exactly the same as a trip to DC to visit the Smithsonian Institution, incredible information can be found at their web site.



Web Sites for Kids and Teens
No matter what you like--science and technology, art, business, politics, community service--Afterschool.gov has something to offer.


Join an Online Discussion

Join or start a discussion related to homework issues. Try the Education and Kids board at KidSource OnLine.


Extra Help

Don't be afraid to hire a tutor for your child. Often teachers and graduate students are interested in earning extra money, and it just might be what your child needs. The hiring of a middle school or high school student can work really well for someone in elementary school.

A Little Humor


Explanation of Homework Policy

Students shouldn't spend more than 90 minutes per night on homework. This time should be budgeted in the following manner:

  • 5 minutes looking for the assignment
  • 11 minutes calling a friend for the assignment
  • 23 minutes explaining how the teacher is mean and just doesn't like kids
  • 8 minutes in the bathroom
  • 10 minutes getting a snack
  • 7 minutes checking the TV Guide
  • 6 minutes telling parents that the teacher never even explained the assignment
  • 10 minutes sitting at the kitchen table waiting for Mom or Dad to do the assignment
-- author unknown

Long-Term Assignments

These are given the night before they are due, which explains the name "long term." It is a long-term commitment to time that begins at 9:30 p.m. and ends around 11:50 p.m.--or later. It is important that the whole family be involved. At least one person races to WalMart or Long's for poster board, and at least one family member ends up in tears. (It doesn't have to be the student.) One parent needs to stay up and complete the project. The other parent needs to call the school and leave a message that the student is out sick.

Chart copyright 2000-2002 by KidSource Online, Inc. Contact us for reprint information for this page. Contact us via our comments area. This chart should not be used in place of advice from an education specialist. It is a representative sampling of generally available information. KidSource OnLine, Inc. assumes no responsibility for misuse of this information.

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