I can look back on it and laugh now.
Change is overwhelming at the best of times.
“Police request the community respect the privacy of the young people involved.”
Classrooms are becoming more and more crowded and kids could really benefit from a bit of outside assistance. Who better to offer it, than their parents, grandparents, aunties or uncles. Rather than having to hire an expensive tutor, there are some great ways to help with their homework. Rather than leave it to a stage where a degree in rocket science is required, sit down with them and give them some guidance.
Firstly, maths can be a torturous topic, yeah? If you catch it early enough, you can help kids with basic addiction, subtraction, division and multiplication. These are the basic building blocks for the rest of their mathematical education. If they are heading into the upper grades, like years 11 and 12; keep reading because I have some tips for you, too.
So, for primary aged kids, instead of sitting them down to hundreds of printed worksheets – which by the way, is what tutors will most likely do – engage them. Go and get some flash cards or play some games. Games are a great learning tool. They will keep the child interested and instead of homework being a chore, it will become a pleasure.
One of the best games around, to teach basic maths skills is Yahtzee. Yep; the dice game. It teaches them all the skills they will need and keeps them entertained. If you don’t want to pay for a set, print a template of the internet and go and buy a set of $2 dice. It’s that easy. Plus, print out a multiplication chart and teach them how it works. As they get older, manipulate the game and make up your own score sheets.
The concept of engaging the child, applies to any subject. Make education fun or at least interesting and increase their exposure. Exposure is key. Remember back to all those posters on the wall at school? If they are older, think out side the box and find ways to relate what they need to learn, to real life situations. There’s tonnes of stuff on the internet to help you grasp the concepts, kids are learning.
A third thing you can do, for all ages, is computer games. Now, you might be thinking, kids spend way too much time on the computer; but it really is an excellent tool for education. Educational games have been created for kindergarten aged kids to adults. Check out which ones are the most valuable; even if they need to be paid for. It will still cost significantly less than a tutor. Some kids play these games at school and may have access to certain accounts already. All you’ll need to do, is download them and watch the magic happen! Sit with them and talk about what they are learning. Increase the challenge as they progress and remember to review what they have learnt.
Lastly, be approachable and be realistic with expectations. When a child needs help with their school work; don’t send them away without some guidance. This is predominately, all which should be offered. Don’t take over and hijack their work. It’s about learning, not perfection.