You can relax, parents. Doing your kids’ homework for them isn’t helping them anyway.

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Note: This content was created in partnership with Charlotte Country Day School.

Okay, maybe relax is too strong.

Does thinking about your kids’ homework give you sweaty palms? Do you worry about how much to help or how to help, and ultimately, are you OK with letting your kids get it wrong?

Fear not because parent involvement doesn’t yield measurable academic results. Wait, what? Yep, it’s true, but it’s probably not what you think.

Adele Paynter, Head of Lower School, Charlotte Country Day School says, “As a broad category, parental involvement in homework actually has a negative impact on student achievement levels. Now that sounds highly discouraging… or like an exciting new reality, depending on your stance.”

Here are the top dos and don’ts to yield a positive impact:

1. Don’t do your child’s homework
2. Don’t take responsibility for your child’s homework
3. Don’t push your child harder and faster in academics (see #5 Do)

1. Do create systems with your child to help them organize their time and materials
2. Do teach your child to self-advocate and let the teacher know when they are confused
3. Do give your child the space to work through frustrations with your support
4. Do share all the things that make your child tick with teachers
5. Do set high expectations, but step back

Adele says, “It’s how the partnership plays out that matters—when the partnership empowers the child, it’s magic! When the partnership means adults doing more of the work than the child, it backfires.”

A successful homework partnership takes the long-view and puts the learning and work in the hands of the child.

Unsuccessful partnerships are short-sighted, and while they may smooth things over quickly, they don’t help children develop the skills, habits of mind, and independence they need to be successful.

Remember the best way to set kids up for success at school or at home is to give them the freedom to explore, to try new things, and to fail with support; they’ll be stronger and wiser for the lessons learned.

Note: This content was created in partnership with Charlotte Country Day School. Browse Bucs Blog for more expertise and trending parenting topics from CCDS. 

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