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School Assignments: Making homework, work

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The “educational system”. We all have varying experiences of what this consisted of. The majority of us will have flashbacks to a familiar routine of completing work assignments that did not relate to daily living (or so we thought). As we advance on our educational journey to focus shifts from play and exploration toward instructional learning, writing, and comprehensive exams. But is it clear, both to parents and students that these “learning moments” translate into real world application? How can parents’ bride this gap without adding more “work”?

Natural opportunities
It can become mundane and easy to fall into a school-time routine; return home from school, do your homework, eat dinner and go to bed. Perhaps this may the right moment for a powerful reminder that authentic learning happens all the time. Putting information into practice, makes that information become valuable, understood, comprehended. In this “doing” process, we provide the opportunity for exploration-or to use- the received information. For example, we can make children an active part of our familiar problem solving strategies. Knowing how to effectively load a dishwasher, how to create a grocery list and find the items, correct place settings when hosting a party, internal clock for starting things like when to make dinner. Active participation reinforces given information.

Asking questions IS learning
Engaging children in this way, encourages them to use the information they are presented. Furthermore, by actively ‘doing’ they can see observe the transformation, including their mistakes, ways to problem solve and discovering novel ways of thinking. Part of the learning process is to question and to explore. As parents, when we create this opportunity as an active participation to living, it has an obvious purpose-to both parent and child.

Wrap up
School provides a backdrop for children to receive information. This doesn’t need to stop at the end of the school day. Rather, time outside of school can be a place to explore given information as a supplemental hands-on learning situation-which surrounds our everyday living.

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