Re-learning the ABC's
Here are the ABC's of Rosemond's approach.
A. - All By Myself - Children should do their homework in a quiet, private place away from noise and distractions. While the kitchen table might seem at first like a nice, flat surface for them to spread out their work, it is also a high traffic family center, and this is to be avoided. Ideally, a homework desk in the child's room or another quiet out of the way area without distractions is ideal. With the child working independently in their own space away from the main activity of the home, the parent's desire to physically be there to help with homework will also be reduced. This leads directly to Rosemond's second point.
B. Back Off - This is often the most difficult step for parents. The idea of "backing off" means that the child should be doing their homework on their own without a parent hovering over their shoulder or sitting at their side. While this might seem contrary to the help you mean to be offering, you might be inadvertently sending the message "you can't do this without my help."
Rosemond suggests that the parent's role is only as a consultant to occasionally help with homework, and only as needed. This means the parent is available to offer specific assistance such as explaining an unknown word or helping a child understand complicated instructions, but only at the child's request, and only for a few moments. A consulting parent's input should be brief and encouraging and should not offer the child a shortcut to completing their own work. If the question cannot be answered within about five minutes, Rosemond recommends that the child be redirected back to his teacher for further explanation, after all it is the teacher's responsibility to ensure that the requirements are understood.
C. Call it Quits - Although many parents set a time for when homework must begin, few provide guidelines for when it must end. This results in what Rosemond calls the "homework marathon." To end the homework marathon and offer your child a healthy view of how homework fits into the overall picture of the day, parents should set an evening deadline whereby homework must be completed. For example, if parents say that homework is to be completed by 8pm, then all homework is to be put away at that time whether it is finished or not. This teaches children good time management skills and might even offer them the possibility of a little family time between homework and bedtime.