- Communicate Expectations from the get-go. Teachers will usually send home a copy of their syllabus, classroom expectations, and/or homework and grading policies. Please read over these with your students, as most of the questions you may have will probably have their answers here. It’s also a great way to show students that we are all on the same page.
- Provide access to technology and support. Jefferson will have the library and a computer lab open after school until 4:30 PM five days a week. These are great places for students to collaborate and work on homework. We will also have tutoring available in the Tech Room with college-age tutors using AVID tutoring methods. These resources are available to all students, free of charge.
Studying and Time Management
- Know that students should always have access to their homework assignments. Whether it is from a teacher’s webpage or in their agendas, the expectation is that students will have homework from every teacher at least twice a week along with several bigger projects/assignments per year. Some teachers will even let students take pictures of homework assignments that have been written on the board.
- Expect that studying and homework are a part of your child’s daily routine. They should have a set time and place where they do homework and a place in their binder or notebook to keep completed work before it is turned in.
- Minimize distractions as much as possible. This includes anything with internet access (smartphone, computer, tablet, etc.), having the television on, or even having music playing. Some studies show that certain types of music can actually help with focus and attention (classical music in particular), but these typically are not the songs our children want to listen to!
- Allow appropriate breaks. The adolescent and pre-adolescent brains can typically maintain attention for twenty minutes at a time. It is totally appropriate to take short breaks (less than five minutes). This is especially true if students are getting a lot of screen-time.
- Help them teach you. When checking your child’s homework, have them explain, or even teach, some of the content. If they can explain it to you, they have grasped what they are learning. If they cannot, they now have a starting point for the questions they should be asking their teachers.
- Talk about and practice time management. This is probably going to be one of the most important skills your child must learn for career and college readiness.
- Make them sleep! Most medical professionals agree that adolescent children should be getting about eight hours of sleep a night. Encourage kids to get a good night’s rest by managing time well and eliminating screen time about an hour or two before bedtime.
- Help them find balance. While education is very important, it is not more important than our students’ health. Work at finding a good balance between work and play.