How to stop nagging your child about homework and revision

Many of the parents I work with, particularly those in my Facebook group, Supportive Parents, Successful Students, tell me that they're worried that they are nagging their children too much when it comes to homework and revision. They don't like nagging, and worry that it will end up damaging their relationship with their child. Do you nag? Why do you think that is? It's because they're not doing what you think they should be doing, and you genuinely care about your child's academic success and want them to do their very best. The problem is, nagging really turns children off and can have completely the opposite effect.

The reason that you're finding yourself having to nag your child about their studies, is probably that you haven't laid out your expectations, or created the right routines and set firm boundaries with your child. You think your child isn't conforming to what you want them to do, but the reality is that they are actually unclear on what it is that you're expecting from them!

How to stop nagging your child about homework and revision

So, how can you turn this situation around? What can you do to stop nagging your child about their studies and start supporting them in a more meaningful way?

Set your expectations, routines and boundaries

Many parents give children lots of freedom and find it hard to say ‘no' when it comes to spending time on their phone or console, watching Netflix or going out with friends. This is because they want their child to be happy and not get stressed. However, if they're serious about getting good results in their exams, this is not the right time and you need to re-set the boundaries, revise the routines and clearly communicate your expectations to them. This will be difficult if they're older and have had free reign for a while, so the earlier you can do this, the better. To set this up, you need to look at:

  • What work needs to be done for your child to reach their potential? To see what the weekly routine of a straight-A student looks like, read this post. You can then help your child to create their own routine.
  • Have a sit-down conversation with your child to get their input. They will likely be even more resistant if you suddenly impose a new set of rules on them without any discussion.
  • Set out the rewards. Things should come in order of priority, not just for productivity, but for your child's wellbeing. So, when they get in from school, they can spend half an hour or so decompressing from the busy day they've had by getting a snack and a drink. Then there should be a very clear expectation that they will get on with their homework. Homework should be the priority, then any revision work before finally they get to relax before bed. The relaxation time is the reward; it comes last so that it motivates your child to get the work done, but also because they need that time to wind down before sleeping (and a good night's sleep is critical!).

Stay strong while it beds in

You are the parent and it is, therefore, your responsibility to set the expectations. You will need to be strong; there is likely to be a certain amount of push-back if the new routines and boundaries are very different to what you have had up to now. However, as it becomes routine, your child will become more accepting and your expectations will be met with little argument and, hopefully, no nagging!

If you're wondering what you should be asking your child to actually do, i.e. what's reasonable and what will get the results, or you're thinking ‘I need support to make this happen', why not consider joining The Extraordinaries Club? My online membership is for parents like you, who need some moral support, accountability and motivation when it comes to supporting their child through the exam years. The Extraordinaries Club helps students with their mindset towards studying, and helps parents with their support skills.

There is an on-site forum where you can ask questions and get support from other parents as well as me – it has private areas for students and parents so you can let off steam! We will also have a fortnightly parents coaching call (students have their own the weeks in between) so you can get specific advice.

Are you ready to find out more?

Click here to read more about joining The Extraordinaries Club, and if you have any more questions about joining The Extraordinaries Club, please email melucy@lifemoreextraordinary.com

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