Thursday, September 17, 2015

The Homework Helper: Reading and Writing Resources

Homework has evolved. Decades ago, my siblings and I were ecstatic when we received our first set of encyclopedias. My mother bought the collection over a period of time through a grocery store offering. I believe it was the local A& P. When she made the final purchase, World History Part I and Part II (a bonus to the set), we thought we had everything we could ever need to complete our homework.

Fast forward to 2015, and you’ll discover that a set of encyclopedias does not meet a child’s homework needs. Websites can be quite helpful in providing supplementary information and activities.

For homework and activities related to reading and writing, you and your child will find the following websites helpful:

Reading and Writing Resources provides the definition, origin, usage, and pronunciation of words. Its companion link includes synonyms and antonyms for words. includes a link titled Parent and After School Resources. Games, podcasts, and activities encourage literacy in a fun way. supports literacy with a variety of writing games, book trailers, and Meet the Author videos. includes resources that focus on grammar, mechanics, and composition. provides a comprehensive link that addresses writing topics and writing strategies for students in grades 7-12.

(Don't forget to monitor you child’s Internet use.)

To encourage reading and writing in your home I recommend the following:
  • Model reading and writing.
  • Talk about your reading and writing activities.
  • Read to your child on a regular basis. They are never too young nor too old. Discuss the characters, plot, setting, and themes. Inquire about his or her likes and dislikes.
  • Have your child read to you and other family members. Make it a family affair by putting on a reader's theater.

  • Establish a "library" in your home. This can be an elaborate room with shelves of books or a simple corner in a room. Provide a combination of traditional and ebooks.
  • Although you can check out ebooks online from your local public library, still take your child to the library to check out books and to attend age-appropriate literacy programs.
  • Provide writing materials: pencils, pens, paper, tablet/laptop/PC, and a comfortable writing area.
  • Display your child's writing: frame it or put it on the frig.
  • Encourage your child to write letters to family and friends.
  • Help your child learn the keyboard. Using a computer for word processing will be less intimidating to him or her.
  • Schedule time for writing and reading. 

What resources did you have when you did your homework? This is the story in you. Share it.


Connect with me on Pinterest to view creative ideas about writing:

  • Why should you write?
  • How should you write?
  • The quirks of writing
  • When should you write?
  • What is writing?
  • What is a writer?
  • In what should you write?

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