Homework Problems

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-12-2004
Homework Problems
Wed, 12-19-2012 - 11:14am

My stepson is 14 and in 8th grade.  This year he has suddenly stopped writing down his assignments and therefore doesn't complete many of his assignments resulting in poor grades.  How do we get him to remember to write down his assignments?

He is smart and gets As usually on his tests but has Cs or Ds in some classes due to his homeowrk  issues.  I tried checking his agenda and his homework to make sure it's complete but that didn't solve the problem.  With a little more digging I realized it was that he isn't writing down the assignments.

Any suggestions? 

any suggestions on consequences?  We also told him that his computer time is limited frmo 3 - 5 and then homework and whatever else.  We also told him to write none or N/A if there is no homeowrk but he isn't doing that so I just don't know what to do.






Avatar for cmlisab
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-30-2011
Wed, 12-19-2012 - 12:45pm

I have similar issues with my 7th grader. One thing that has helped some is to have him get the teacher sign his planner (or whatever he uses to write down homework assignments) each day. The teachers don't usually have time to do that for every kid at this level but they will for certain students if you ask them. My son doesn't like having to do it b/c it makes him seem like an "elementary school kid" but until he can be trusted to start writing everything down, it's what we'll do.

Also, the teachers down here are really good about keeping their websites updated so we can often check their to see what homework he has each day. 

You're definitely not alone- keep us updated and vent anytime! It's mentally exhausting trying to keep up with all of their projects, due dates, etc. I keep saying "I've already been through school but it feels like I'm back in it again!"


Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Wed, 12-19-2012 - 1:58pm

We went through this with two of our three kids.

With now-20yo DS, we had meetings with the team of teachers, and he had to get them to sign his assignment pad every single day.  He still was scatterbrained and disorganized but it did help.  He was also brilliant, so that offset some of the effects of missing homework - he could easily pull 100s on tests without doing homework.  Still, this did cause him to get dropped from honors English in 11th grade, which we did not protest - and *that* taught him a lesson! 

12yo DS has bigger problems, though.  He has ADD.  *One* of the characteristics for a kid this age is that he "forgets" to write down homework or "forgets" he has it, because he's too impulsive to think through the consequences of not doing his homework.  We have a lot of workarounds for it - the teachers post all assignements and grades on the parent portal, so we can keep on top of it better.  We took away all video games during the week except Minecraft - he gets 15 mins on that when he gets home, then he doesn't get it again until the end of the night - that keeps him from trying to rush through homework to get to it.  If DH finds out (via parent portal) that he hasn't turned in an assignment, he loses ALL electronics the next day, including TV.  That has seriously been the best enforcer, but I think it only works because of all the other constructs we have in place.  Note that none of them require giving up video games for a week or anything like that - but the baseline now is that he has to *earn* his electronics time on a daily basis.  He starts with nothing.

Hope those ideas help.  BTW, DH is a SAHD, so that makes a huge difference.  There is someone sitting on DS from the moment he gets home until he goes to bed, no excuses.