The Homework Struggle Is Real. How A Homework Coach Can Help.
Does your child struggle to organize and complete schoolwork? Do they “lose” papers between home and class? Does the workload feel overwhelming? Are you up late at night finishing projects that should have been started days, or even weeks ago?
These stories are common in my office. They often lead to increased anxiety, depression and family conflict at home. If your child is struggling with challenges that extend across several subjects in school, and into other areas of his or her life, they may have a weakness in “executive functioning.”
Executive functions are the basic skills of self-management that allow us to set goals and achieve them.
- The ability to manage emotions and impulses
- Understanding how to break down tasks into manageable steps
- Knowing “where to begin” with projects
- Accurately estimating how long tasks may take
- Being able to “self-start” and “continue” with mundane tasks
- Having the flexibility to make adjustments when something isn’t working
- Setting and following daily routines
- Staying organized and being able to prioritize
- Exercising impulse control
- Being able to self-monitor, judge efficacy, and make necessary adjustments
Some people innately are able to develop these skills. These are your child’s classmates that somehow show up to school with color-coded folder systems and highlighters. (These are the ones giving my son pencils and paper).
Many other bright children need someone to teach them the tools and habits to become organized and effective. As a parent or teacher, it is helpful to explicitly state the steps you are taking when utilizing your own executive functioning skills. Learn about homework strategies here.
Executive Functioning Weaknesses Lead To Emotional Roadblocks
Oftentimes, because they have struggled for some time, a child with weak executive functioning skills needs someone who also understands the emotional component of being asked to make changes. They may understandably feel frustrated and defeated. Negative self-talk and feelings of stupidity or failure are common. They may doubt their ability to complete tasks due to a history of poor follow-through or feel overwhelming feelings of anxiety due to the fact that they are always pushing deadlines.
That’s where an executive function or “homework” coach comes in. Executive function coaches are different than subject matter tutors. They have the mission and training to address emotional barriers as well as identify specific executive functioning weaknesses. They develop strategies for change and explicitly teach the necessary skills for long-term success.
Elevate’s Homework Coaches
Elevate Counseling has executive functioning coaches who work with clients and their families in their home, school and community targeting behaviors and developing skills that lead to independence, improved performance, and success in meeting work and school demands. If your child struggles with homework, needs support in figuring out how to get “motivated”, or is overwhelmed and emotional surrounding schoolwork, an executive functioning coach may be the ticket. Elevate’s coaches work with ages 5-college, helping families organize, develop strategies and take actionable steps to stay on schedule. For more information, Contact Us.