An after-school routine to help kids and parents beat homework stress


Back to school can be a difficult transition for many families, but even more challenging for some is the return to homework — for both kids and parents.

A new survey from Office Depot finds that nearly 25 percent of parents think their children are given more homework than they can handle, while four in five parents said they have struggled to understand their kids’ homework. Additionally, the survey found that nearly 50 percent of parents would opt their child out of receiving homework in at least one subject area, while one in three fessed up to having finished their child’s homework for them.

“We were surprised to find that nearly one in three parents admitted to completing their child’s homework for them at least once,” says Natalie Malaszenko, SVP, eCommerce for Office Depot. “We can only speculate, but parents might feel compelled to complete their child’s homework to help minimize their child’s stress: 50 percent of parents reported their child has cried due to homework stress. Minimizing arguments could also be a factor since nearly 40 percent of parents argue with their child about homework at least once a week.”

Though some schools are banning homework, partly in response to growing research around the potential harm in overloading children, homework is still the law of the land for most school-aged children.

How can young kids and parents tackle after school assignments without any arguments or meltdowns? We spoke with a number of experts to build an optimal routine for getting homework done.