Homework Helper Activities

Make homework fun with these 11 games and activities to encourage your child.

By Tara Koerber

1. Space Race

If you child does not have a permanently set up spot to do homework, such as a desk in his/her room, this is a good way to start homework time. Use a timer or stopwatch to time how long it takes your child to set up his/her supplies to begin homework. You can even keep track of record times.

Try to create a homework routine. Have a designated homework spot and a designated homework time. It is harder for a child to argue with the clock.

2. Play Office

Pretend that your child has an office job. He/she can even dress up to look the part. You can be the boss. Time him/her what they must do at work today (the homework assignments). Then let him/her do the job. If he/she needs a little help, your office is right down the hall.

3. Macaroni Math

Use macaroni to illustrate the concepts of math. They work well for addition, subtraction, division, and even multiplication. The tangible noodles help to make the point.

4. Food Fractions

Pizzas are great helpers when learning fractions; but you can use any food you can cut into equal sized pieces. Just remember to count how many pieces make the whole.

5. Candy Problems

Turn math into a treat! Simply put an M&M, Skittle, or other favorite candy on each math problem. When your child works exceptionally hard on a problem, he/she gets to eat the candy.

6. More Spelling Fun

While bathing your child this evening, call out our child's spelling list. You can use soap crayons or soap finger-paints. They make a wide array of these products for the bathtub. Simply check your local drugstore.

7. I Write the Songs

Making up songs or rhymes with your child is a fun way to commit things to memory.

8. Alphabet Body Contortion

Let your child practice spelling by forming the letters of the words with his/her body.

9. Map Mosaic

A fun way to learn geography is to make it into a game. Find a map you can cut up Let your child cut the states apart to make puzzle pieces. Then he/she can put them together.

10 Puppet Play

Playing with puppets can transform the monotony of doing homework. Use the puppets to answer questions, do mental math problems, and recite poems or speeches.

11. Scrabble Scramble

Another way to practice spelling words is to use the tile letters from a scrabble game. You can hand the letters that make up a word to your child and ask him/her to put them together. Or you can ask your child to pick them out without any help. Finally, you can play a game of Scrabble using your child's spelling words..

Tara Koerber is the author of several parenting tip books. This helpful list of fun homework activities is excerpted, with publisher permission, from Show Me You Love Me: A Parent's Fun Guide to Teaching Children They Are Valuable.