Let’s play a little teacher MadLibs!
Give me some places and my students have left homework there: home, their best friend’s house, the bus, the bus stop, grandma’s, church, work, the airplane.
So.many.kids. either lose or forget to hand in their homework. The papers magically disappeared somewhere between school, home, and back. Why? This came up regularly at parent conferences. Usually, the kiddo was generally unorganized. The first question I always asked, “Do you use a planner?” Nope. (If that’s true for your teen, check out my post on planner use.) Second question – “What does your backpack look like?” Like a bomb went off inside it. (That’s the topic of an upcoming post!)
Enter the Homework Folder
A homework folder is a quick fix that will organize your kid and improve homework completion! Click To Tweet I have 2 ways for you to learn about it. If you like visual and videos, here is a quick one I made on Facebook Live. If you would rather read about it, just scroll past the video 🙂
Get a folder with pockets. I recommend a plastic one because they last longer, but any folder will do. Label one side “To Do” and the other side “Turn in.”
During the school day, your teen should place all homework papers (and any accompanying notes) in the “To Do” side of the folder. This includes:
- Handouts describing homework assignments
- Notes from class! If she is using an interactive notebook and doesn’t want to bring the whole notebook home, she can take a picture of the notes on her phone instead.
- Letters from the school
- Papers that require a parent signature
That night, she should take all the papers from the left side out and begin working on homework. Any letters or papers needing a signature get handed over to you. As she finishes assignments, she should place them in the “Turn In” side. Long-term project? Place those papers back in the “To Do” side of the folder.
When the teacher asks for homework the next day, your daughter opens her folder, takes the completed assignment out of the “Turn In” side, and hands it in. Homework completed AND turned in. Fistbump!
It takes a while for this to become a habit. For the first few week (or weeks or a month) you will need to check the folder and its organization on a regular basis. Look to make sure papers on the correct side. If they aren’t, point out that it’s looking a little rough and expect your teen to organize.
Try this with your teen and let me know how it goes in the comments below! Did you make any tweaks? Has it worked??