Occupational Therapy Tips for Homework Success

Many factors can contribute to difficulty with homework. If your child is resisting homework time, it may be helpful to consider if making changes to the routine can help to support your child’s participation.

One factor to consider is how your child is sitting while doing homework. If a child’s trunk and core muscles are weak, then he may have to work harder just to sit up or to sit still. He may be using his mental and physical resources in order to stay in the chair and not channeling them into doing his homework.  By helping children maintain good posture and alignment, we help to support the work of their hands, eyes, ears, and brains for learning.

If your child sits at a table or desk, do they have the support needed for good posture?  For proper positioning, follow these steps:  Place feet flat on the ground with ankles, knees, and hips bent at 90°. If needed, place a telephone book under the child’s feet.  Place desk or table no higher than child’s elbow (when sitting).  Tilt paper to the left for right-handed students.  Tilt paper to the right for left-handed students.

Even when your child is set up with good positioning support for posture, it is important to take frequent, short movement breaks to keep core muscles active and the the brain alert and focused.

Movement is the key to help your child’s brain and body get ready to do the hard work needed for homework. Sitting for long periods of time can make brains drowsy. Taking a break for as little as 2 minutes can make a difference. Movement breaks help the brain to alert itself to the environment.  Some great movement break ideas include climbing, crawling, jumping, and lifting. You can blow up a balloon and play volleyball, dance to a song or do some jumping jacks. Building in regular movement breaks to the homework routine can help to improve concentration and focus and make the homework process feel like less of a chore.

Yours in Health,

New Horizons Wellness Services
13333 SW 68th Pkwy,
Tigard, OR 97223

- https://g.page/newhws

New Horizons Wellness Services provides a true multidisciplinary approach to mental & physical health treatments for children, adults and families.