Teenage boy sitting at desk doing homework

Most parents want their children to be productive. Ideally, having a task to do and just getting on with it with no distractions and no procrastinating. Just doing what they need to do. However, it is not always easy to have that focus. Children can get distracted easily, especially if there is a phone nearby or a screen.

What we need to do as parents is get them into the habit of knowing they have to do something and doing it, rather than putting if off by saying they will do it later or they don’t have time. But it is not just about starting the job, it is about doing it right. Many children will have a task and just rush through it. They want to get the job done fast so that they are able to move on to the next thing. However, the rush could probably result in them not doing a good job.

Let’s take homework for example. When a child rushes their homework, it may be that the teacher cannot read their writing or that they make sloppy mistakes. Their work will not be of the standard that it needs to be, and it is very possible that they will have to do it all again.

So how do we help them slow down and do the homework right the first time?

Children Being Productive And Doing Work Well

  • Well, we can get them to look at the homework and decide how long will it take them to do it. Will it take 20 minutes or 40 minutes? Is it really as difficult as they think?
  • Then they need to do the homework taking their time and care over their answers and their writing. Help them to think about doing a great job rather than a good enough job.
  • When they have finished, get them to look over what they have done and decide if they have put all their effort into that piece. They should be honest with themselves.
  • If they have, then they can either move onto the next piece of work or reward themselves with some phone time or chat with a friend before starting the next piece of work.

Getting the hard work or the task done first and done well will inevitably save a lot of time in the long run. If a child has to do their homework or the task twice, then they have wasted time that they could have spent on the Xbox, for example. Surely it is best to get it right the first time and actually save themselves some time too? Definitely have this conversation with your child so that they can see the benefits of slowing down.

The Parents ToolkitBeing productive does not come easy to everyone so, if your child struggles with this, please pick up the phone and see if I can help. My book ‘The Parent’s Toolkit’ also shares ideas of how you can help your child focus, and is a useful first point of reference for teaching your child how to be more productive.

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