How can parents fight against teens’ ‘I don’t have homework’?

Teens walk the fine line between childhood and maturity often stumbling back and forth. As young adults they want to have freedom and privileges but rarely accept the responsibilities that come attached with being an adult. Making a child sit down and put his nose in a book is a hard task to achieve. Getting a teen to perform this feat is oftentimes even more difficult, leaving parents frustrated and helpless. If your teenager is adamant on doing anything but his or her assigned at-home work, then it is likely that you have experienced this firsthand. Trying to get your teenagers to do their homework might like banging your head against a brick wall, but the former doesn’t have to be so painful. Here are some new tricks about how to help your child with homework that you can add to your bag.

Revamping your vocabulary

Danger bells sound to teens at the mention of certain words. Unfortunately, the word ‘homework’ is one of them. All too often, parents’ petition to their teens to do their homework is met with the denial ‘I don’t have homework’. This denial about the existence of assigned at-home work is the final battle cry for teens. How can parents help with homework when your teen denies its existence altogether? Chick Moorman and Thomas Haller of suggest that a simple tweak in the vocabulary can incline your teen towards opening their books.

Use the word ‘study’ instead of homework. Fix a times lot for ‘study’ every night. If your teen denies having been given any homework, assign them a topic of your choice to work on. Once your kid realizes that they will have to participate in the ‘study’ session irrespective of them having homework or not, they will not deny the existence of the inevitable homework.

Stay on the sidelines

It is very tempting for some parents to jump in and ‘help’ their teens with their homework. Sometimes parents think it’s necessary for them to micromanage their teen’s homework in order for them to get it done. Instead of participating in the study sessions, it is more helpful for teens if you firmly stand on the sidelines. When they are in the process of finishing their homework, build their intrinsic motivation and feeling of responsibility. Most teens live in the moment and fail to see the big picture. Explain to them that as much as they hate the sound of it, doing the tasks assigned for home is very important. Homework leads to good grades and that will eventually lead them to a good college.

Tell them that every homework assignment is a small piece of the big picture.

Selecting the topic

Nothing puts a teen off studying more than a topic that doesn’t interest them. Choose a topic for them that grabs their attention. If they are, for instance, working on a physics assignment, relate it somehow to their favorite sport. That will not only make the process a fun experience but will also take off the pressure the teen might feel when finishing their homework.

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