4. You Do Homework Too
If possible, take this time to quietly do your own "homework." This might be work you brought home with you, reading you need to catch up on or sorting through mail and bills. Your children will be more focused if they see you setting a similar example. Though it may be difficult, try to be disciplined about your own use of computers and phones during this time. During homework and study time, think of your home as a library and do all you can to make it a place that fosters focus and limits distraction. 

5. Set a Place
Create a designated place in your home for independent study. This space should have a table or desk with plenty of room for books and papers and should have all homework supplies readily available. Keep a few extra supplies on hand to avoid those last-minute, late-night dashes to the store for printer paper, poster board, paint, etc. 

Also, try to establish this space in a quiet, low-traffic area of your home where distractions can be managed and minimized. Keep the area conducive to study by ensuring it is well lighted and ventilated. If you have more than one child and they can work together quietly—great! But realistically, you may need to create a separate area for each child.

6. No Texting
As adults, we know how text messages and emails can interrupt our own concentration. Let your children know they cannot read text messages or use their cell phones during study time or homework hour. If there are questions related to the assignment that you cannot answer, allow them to make a brief phone call (monitored by you, of course)! 

7. Rewards
Rewards can be controversial because they can easily become bribes. But the fact is, human beings respond to positive reinforcement. If you think a positive reward system will work to help motivate your children, avoid material, monetary or food rewards. Instead, negotiate the rewards based on spending quality time together. Ask your children to think of things they would like to do with you, and then make that a monthly goal. 

Create a homework chart or download a free, printable chart online. For each homework assignment completed neatly, in a timely manner and without complaint, your child gets a star. These stars could then add up to an end-of-the-month treat: a new book, a trip to the park or museum, a bike ride or a family movie night. 

How to use praise and positivity


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