10 Students and situations are different, and parents must find their own way to deal with the issue of homework. Parents, however, must make homework their child’s responsibility. In these scenarios, the responsibility for doing homework has been given to the student, where it belongs. Of course, for these approaches to work, the parents must follow through, and if necessary, impose consequences. Encourage involvement in school activities Studies have shown that students who are involved in extracurricular ac- tivities enjoy school more, and also do better academically. When students participate in school activities, they make new friends, gain new skills, and have fun. Encourage your child to get involved in at least one school related activity. Also, encourage your child to be a part of the school community by attending school sponsored activities such as games and dances. “When Alex got to middle school, he became very social and his grades began to slip. I told Alex that if he wanted to be with his friends on the weekends, he’d have to first prove to me that he was keeping up with his schoolwork. I made up a form with the three classes I was most concerned about. This form asked each teacher to verify that Alex had turned in all of his assignments, and had no grade below a C that week. (I checked with these teachers first to make sure this was okay with them.) I told Alex that he needed to have his teachers initial this form each Friday. If I didn’t see a form signed by these teachers, he couldn’t see his friends that weekend.” Mr. J. Lopez “At our house, it’s simple. My daughter knows what kind of grades we expect to see on her report card. I show a lot of interest in her schoolwork, but I don’t nag about homework. Laura knows what’s expected, and knows that if her grades drop, she’ll lose privileges.” Alison Hamilton