end homework battles

Tips to End Homework Battles for Children with ADHD

4 Tips To End Homework Battles for Children with ADHD


You are tired of the regular fights over homework.

You need a solution to all this, right?

But before anything, please remember – your child with ADHD is not at fault!

In this article, we’ve got the four tips we include in our 1:1 coaching sessions to end the homework battles for children with ADHD. Look at the results these tips reaped for many students with ADHD and their parents.

end homework battles

end homework battles

end homework battles

You can also achieve these results by implementing the strategies taught in the article.

Though, we are the professionals in the tutoring space excelling in training students for years.

Of course, professional execution will always be different from parental. But we gonna share the same knowledge with executing tips with y’all to make homework tasks less hassle.

Start with acceptance

Accepting your child’s mental state is the first step you must take.

Being parents to children with ADHD is a big challenge – You need to have patience and calm to deal with your child.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) suggests parents and teachers use behavioral therapy as the first line of treatment.

Look at the image – can you feel the hyperactivity in your child’s brain?end homework battles

Source: ADD Solutions NJ

However, I will not get into the brain wiring of an ADHD child in this article. But despite different brain wiring, these children can perform classroom-appropriate behavior. They are capable of completing their homework and other chores. What these children need is a proper work structure along with clear expectations. 

Create a parent-designed behavioral plan for your child that includes small rewards for small accomplishments and more significant rewards for higher achievements. 

Before heading to the homework tips, it is essential to consider the challenges children with ADHD face while doing the homework. Some most common challenges include:

  • Feeling defeated/guilty-  Repeated bouts of bad scores and failures in academics make ADHD children feel defeated. However, it leads to self-doubt. A self-sabotage label of – “I have ADHD, and I don’t own the capability to focus on subjects. I’m stupid.”
  • Difficulty in processing information- Information processing is not easy for ADHD children. The dysfunctioning of neurotransmitters in the ADHD brain makes information processing difficult for a child.  Sometimes not enough neurotransmitters are released, while at times, neurons can’t catch neurotransmitters easily. However, often sending neurons call transmitters back very early – without making any meaningful connection with receiving neurons.
  • Tired-  Constant tiredness among children with ADHD is due to their continuous fight with themselves. Their struggle to focus, control emotional imbalance, stop fidgeting, get organized, etc., makes them tired.
  • Medication rebound-  Medication rebound refers to the re-emergence of symptoms controlled by medication. Therefore, this makes it a big struggle for ADHD children to complete their homework.
  • Trouble focusing-  Children with ADHD struggle with regulating their focus and cannot screen out distractions from their environment. Minor interruptions like outside movements, noise in the hallway, or their internal thought fluctuations distract them.
  • Poor time management skills-  The delay in the development of the prefrontal cortex in the ADHD brain is the big reason behind their poor time management skills.

ADHD children cannot allocate and use their time effectively, which leads to unfinished homework every day even after a lot of effort.

end homework battles

Let’s now head to our tips to end homework battles for your children with ADHD. 

1.  Offer choices

Do you give orders or offer choices?

Do you say:

  • Today we are going to do a math assignment.
  • We will do the homework right after lunch.
  • You need to complete the English project before going out.

Does your conversation include such similar sentences? If yes, these need to be changed right now. Such talks create tension in the minds of ADHD children.

Also, it is seen that children with ADHD perform better when they are offered choices/freedom. Don’t try to control your child’s activity, thoughts, or emotions. They perform the best when they are allowed a free flow.

👉 Why do offering choices create a difference?

Offering freedom of choice to students with ADHD suppresses their defying and challenging behavior. They feel respected when they are offered options. This gives them a sense of control – they feel their opinion matters.

Replace your sentences with:

  • Will you complete your math assignment or science one?
  • After finishing your homework, do you want to play cricket or hangman on board?
  • Read any book of your choice and summarize it creatively.

Offering choices is a healthy practice – try to incorporate this tip into your routine. You will see a very positive output.

2.  Set up the right environment

Environment matters the most. The right environment is essential not only for children with ADHD but for all – graduates, corporate employees, homemakers, etc.

This environment can be different for different students. Kids may prefer to study in the living room, while teenagers may want separate study spaces.

Consider your child’s age, preference, activities, and requirements to create a well-structured study environment.

Setting up the right environment doesn’t mean following hardcore discipline and rules. It is crucial to maintain the flexibility and comfortability of your child.

👉 Incorporate fun elements and essential tools

Children with ADHD face difficulty in controlling their body movements. For example, if your child fidgets a lot, you can incorporate a small squishing ball in the study area.

If children are used to tapping their feet, you can stick a half-cut tennis ball on the floor on the sides of the chair.

3.  Teach self-advocacy

Self-advocacy can change the existing landscape. Preaching self-advocacy will empower children with ADHD to lead their life smoothly both at home and outside the home.

Self-advocacy refers to the capability of identifying and analyzing what’s important to you and being able to ask for help without embarrassment when needed.

It is essential to understand that self-advocacy is not about asking for help. It is about realizing when you can resolve the problem and the times when you need others’ help.

👉 How can self-advocacy end homework battles for children with ADHD?

Self-advocacy will bring self-awareness to children that will help them in their academics. Children will identify their strengths and weaknesses.

Also, it will help them manage their emotional imbalance – a major challenge in completing the homework.

4.  Reinforce praise and positive talks

Reinforcing praise and positive talks between you and your child with ADHD can significantly change their behavior. Punishing or correcting children creates a brick wall between parents and children, leading to a worse condition.

Don’t wait for big achievements. For example, your children complete their homework in 1 hour on average. The day your child completes the assignment in 50 or 55 minutes – please praise the child – even for finishing the work 5 or 10 minutes early.

Praise and positive talks fill the child with excitement and enthusiasm, stimulating their brain to do more.

👉 Offer both – rewards and verbal praise.

You should offer both physical rewards and verbal praise. Positive reinforcement will build the idea of being rewarded for every good action, which will reinforce encouragement to do good activities like finishing homework timely, getting good grades, etc.

👉 Remember striking the right balance.

The right kind of parenting strikes the right balance between being a parent and being a friend. Sometimes, things get overwhelmed, and parents go overboard praising their child, which can negatively impact the child’s behavior.

Overpraising can make your child unappreciative of compliments. Also, sometimes this fosters a greedy nature in the child. Balance is essential – otherwise, it can flip the coin. Children can become expectant of appraisal gifts; if they don’t get it, the strategy can strike you back.


Don’t go away with discipline: A word from Themba Tutors

Reinforcing some effective strategies to end homework battles for children is not a bad idea. But getting all away with discipline will be a big mistake. A mix of flexibility and discipline is an excellent approach to the right parenting.

We have worked with thousands of parents weighing heavy on one side, which fosters negative behavior in their child.

These are a few of our experimented strategies to help children complete their homework effectively.

However, if you struggle to help your children with ADHD to end homework battles, you can reach out to us anytime for help. Our professionals are experts in training and coaching children with ADHD.




Need help with ending homework battles for children with ADHD?
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Craig Selinger, CEO of Themba Tutors (serving Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, Bronx, Westchester, Long Island, New Jersey, and Connecticut), is a NY State licensed speech-language pathologist, executive functioning coach, and learning specialist with over 18 years of experience working professionally with over a thousand families. His expertise includes language-based learning issues, e.g. reading, writing, speaking, and listening, executive functioning, ADHD/ADD, and learning disabilities. Check out his interviews with top-notch professionals in the field on Spotify.
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