Q. Do you have any ideas about setting up after-school routines?
A. School is starting and this is the perfect time to set up a routine for homework and independent reading.
Observe each of your children. Some children need to come home and relax or do some physical activity, while others must start right in on homework assignments. All of your children may fall into the same category, while some of you may have those that fall into both.
If you have children that fall into both categories, explain to them that everyone’s bodies are different and you are respecting their needs. It may take a few weeks to settle into the after-school routine. Once it is in place, life will run a lot smoother in your household.
Independent reading is reading that is done by your child with very little assistance. Your child should read independently for around 20 minutes each day. If this causes battles at home, try this. Tell your children if they read daily, they will receive a reward at the end of the week. You decide on the rewards ahead of time. Adjust rewards according to the age of each child.
• Stay up/out on Friday or Saturday evening 15-30 extra minutes.
• Pick out a special item to go into the lunch pail.
• Go get a coke or ice cream with you.
• Receive points that can be saved and redeemed for a larger prize.
• One or both parents have 15-20 minutes of one-on-one time with the child.
• Go to school and eat with your child.
• If your child’s weekly family responsibility is to do the dishes, let your child have one free evening.
The ideas here are endless. Your child can help you make the list. The goal here is to set up a routine that is workable for your family.
Copyright © 2014 by Nancy Downing. All rights reserved.
Read more Ask a Teacher Q&A‘s with Nancy Downing. Nancy has been named a USA Today Teacher of the Year. She is a special education teacher and the former Center Director of Learning Rx in Little Rock.
Nancy is the co-author of The Grandparent Connection: 365 Ways to Connect With Your Grandchild’s Heart.