Monday, April 9, 2012

A Road Map for Change

I am often asked how to implement The Homework Trap, given that many teachers do not readily agree with to the modifications I suggest. Because of that, I am offering this road map of what you need to do.
  1. Set time limits. Establish the amount of time you feel your child can work (no more than ten minutes per night per grade) and excuse him from working when that time is up, regardless of what he actually does.
  2. Inform the teacher of your decision. Make it clear that this is your standard and it is not negotiable.
  3. See how the teacher reacts. If the response if favorable, ask for help prioritizing assignments.
  4. If the teacher does not agree to reduce the penalties, give him or her a copy of the book (It is an easy read and reasonable to expect it will be read).
  5. When disagreements arise, consistently return to the book and ask if he or she has read it. Be clear that it is unfair for the teacher to reject these concepts without at least becoming familiar with them.
  6. Focus on the problem more than the solutions. Once the teacher has read the book, don’t get overly hung up on whether he or she agrees with my recommendations. Ask his or her opinion of my analysis of why your child is not completing the assignments.
  7. Once the teacher agrees with my analysis of the problem, that teacher will be more sensitive to your child’s needs even if he or she does not completely agree with my recommendations.
  8. Buy the book.   To implement this approach, you need to buy the book, not just to develop a better understanding of my model, but so you have it as a tool that you can physically hand to the teacher, and ask for that teacher to read it. 
  9. Return to website

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