Helping a Youth Overcome Poor Schoolwork
Annette Nay, Ph.D.
It is imperative that the parents stay in touch with the studentís
teachers to see that the work is being done.
The parents must keep the student responsible and answerable to them
for all school work.
some students will not take the responsibility to get their homework
assignments and do the homework, many of these have to have a homework
notepad in which they must list the days homework and have it signed by
each teacher, every day, so their parents can see what is to be done each
schools have a homework hot line that can be accessed by phone or by
e-mail. Most teachers invite interaction between parents via the
phone, appointment, or e-mail.
is then the parents responsibility to make sure the student has mandatory
study time set aside each night in which s/he accomplishes the daily
take the studentís word as s/he is not trust worthy yet!
Always assume there is homework in every class.
The Contingency Plan
Since these parents know that their student does not want to do homework,
they plan in advance for the day that their student comes home without
notebook signed or they do not bring home the books which are needed to do the
have already met with each teacher and explained what they need for the
teacher to help their student be responsible and successful.
understand what is expected in each class.
have made prior arrangements to get the number to the school's homework
hot line if there is one.
have the home phone of each teacher for when they need it.
have e-mail access to reach the teacher about other issues such as dates
for tests and due dates for projects, and etc.
have told their student what is expected of him/her and the consequences
if these things are not done.
are always consistent and immediate with administering the consequences.
The student that doesn't bring home the books or get his/her homework
assignments signed will:
a privilege. This must be
something that is of great worth to the student.
to walk or will be taken back to get the books.
If they are taken back, they are assessed the cost of gas which
will be take out of their allowance or they will be assessed an extra
nasty chore like washing baseboards, wall, toilets, the refrigerator.
etc., which must be done after the homework is finished.
It must be done before s/he is free to do pleasurable pursuits.
In no way should the misbehavior of the student allow him/her not do
his/her work or s/he is rewarded for misbehaving and will continue to get
Most students hate school because they do not do well in their school work.
They have little or no success in their homework because they are so
far behind that they cannot perform the school work.
It may be that if the parents cannot help their youth catch up by
explaining the daily work and helping him/her to work through the homework,
without doing it for him, then they may have to invest in a tutor for him.
The school usually has names of qualified people who serve as a tutors,
but the price is usually quite spendy.
Studies show that when a student does the homework that s/he performs
better on tests. The reverse is
It is important that the student not be allowed to get behind.
This causes frustration and poor self esteem.
Studies show that frustration and poor self esteem usually lead to the
child acting out in school and ultimately getting suspended and kicked out of
school. For some students, this
frustration leads to violence at home, the community and in the school.
It is a known fact that one failure leads to more failure in all aspects of
life due to the failure casting poor self-esteem on the child.
This leads to failure to succeed as an adult, mate, parent and
A parent must over see the student during the mandatory study time.
This should be about two hours to get the school work on a Junior High
level accomplished. Depending on the work and how far behind the student is, this
may be even longer some nights.
The parent supervising the homework can plan activities so that s/he will
be in the same vicinity as where the student is doing his/her homework.
That way the parent can see that the student is taking full advantage
of the study time for studying and if needed the parent can be there to help
as a problem arises.
No activities should supersede the mandatory the study hours each school
night for the student. The
study hours can be worked around sports or special activities as long as the
study hours happen before the student gets too tired to think or that they cut
into the student bedtime.