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PeopleStripes.org article

I have to keep nagging my child to do her homework!

Feb 12, 2018
Elizabeth Murphy, EdD
ELIZABETH MURPHY, EdD, is a psychologist and type expert whose research focuses on verifying the development of normal personality differences according to the theory of psychological type. She works extensively with families and teams of people to improve communication and resolve relationship needs.
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Homework can be a constant source of friction in the home. Many parents feel that without a constant push, their children will not complete homework assignments.

At one workshop a parent said, “I realize I have been nagging my child to death over her homework because I think she needs to sit down and do it right away, and she keeps saying, ‘I'll get to it, I'll get to it, I'll get to it.'"

The child was around 12 or 13 years old. We asked, “Does she get to it?" The mother replied, "Yes, but I always worry that she is not getting to it and that she won't plan well so I kind of push her to do it."

This is a very common response when we have families experiencing homework issues with children who have a style that's more “deadline activated.” Because parents are afraid the child won't get the work done, they spend a lot of time nagging. But when you keep nagging, you send a secondary message to the child that says, "You cannot direct yourself. You need me to be your outside agent, making sure you can get through life successfully."

That really isn't the message we want to send them. We want them to feel the autonomy of self-management, knowing that they can handle it, that they can take of it. If something happens and they do not get their work done this time, they have an opportunity to solve that particular challenge and fix it for the next time.

We know children with a Perceiving preference can struggle with the timing of their learning. They are often not born with a good sense of timing the way children with a judging preference are. These children seem to actually come into life with this internal clock that says, "It's going to take me this long to get it done and just in case, I'll put some extra minutes in there to be sure that I can get it done." The Perceiving child grows up underestimating how long something is going to take. They might benefit from a bit of “data collection” advice.

You might say, "Can you get all those definitions written in ten minutes, 15 minutes? Let's just time it for the next two or three times and just see how long it will actually take you. It might be shorter, it might be longer, but that's good data for us to know. Let's gather some data and see if we can make this a decision that's based on solid information." Now it is not you managing them, it is the data managing them.

If all of a sudden, they look at it and say, "Oh it took me 25 minutes the first time but it only took me 20 minutes the second time but the third time it was still 21 minutes." Then you say, "Okay, now that's great information for you for budgeting. How much time do you need to have in order to complete the homework assignment?" It changes the role of the parent from the nagging parent who is trying to make the child do something, to a facilitative shadow that's helping the child use their own skills when working with homework, and with many other issues in life!

When your style is very different than your child's, it's sometimes hard to appreciate their way of completing tasks. Before you take over the management of a project, as a parent you can ask yourself, “Is this what my child needs in the moment or might they need something else?"

We want to focus on the outcome—did the homework get done on time? Did the child get a chance to manage their time successfully? If so, then both of these important skills are being reinforced–without nagging!

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Related Content

Timing: Type Tip #2

Use backward chaining to help perceiving-preferenced students to gauge when to begin assignments. Ask them to name the last moment they can begin and still get the work done. Consider possible interferences and let them wait to produce. One mom asked, "Wouldn't they be more comfortable if they just did their homework on Friday night? Then they would have the whole weekend worry-free.” They already have the weekend worry-free.

The younger the child the greater the chance they will underestimate the amount of time it will take to complete an assignment, especially if it is a new kind of assignment. Teach them better timing. It is not about irresponsibility. It is about timing.

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Do it for Mom: Type Tip #3

if you are the parent with a judging preference and your child has a perceiving preference, it is still OK to ask them to do their homework on a Friday night but recognize they are doing it for you, not for them. You might say, "My job as your Mom is to check your homework. I cannot relax over the weekend until I get that job off my list of things to do. Please do your homework on Friday so I can enjoy the rest of the weekend." Kids can adjust their behavior to respect the type of the parent, too.

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It's Their Homework Not Yours

It's Their Homework Not Yours – How to Help Without Taking Over the Work

Apr 03, 2018
Elizabeth Murphy, EdD
ELIZABETH MURPHY, EdD, is a psychologist and type expert whose research focuses on verifying the development of normal personality differences according to the theory of psychological type. She works extensively with families and teams of people to improve communication and resolve relationship needs.
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Have you endured the experience of supervising, snoopervising, and actually doing your child’s homework? I believe every parent wants the child to do the work independently but for some that habit does not seem to develop naturally. Some parents monitor every step of their child’s work, and the child learns to manipulate the system until the parent is doing more work than the child.

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End of school...please!

End of School, End of Report Period, End of Patience

Jun 12, 2018
Yvonne Nelson-Reid, PhD
YVONNE NELSON-REID, PhD, is the Senior Development Associate at the Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT®), the publisher for the People Stripes® website, a mother of 5, writer, teacher (BEd, MA), depth psychologist – Jungian and archetypal studies (MA, PhD), and career coach. Parenting, teaching in a classroom, or on the ice as a figure skating coach has taught her a great deal about relationships and the importance of communication.
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There is nothing I hate worse than seeing potential wasted. Getting that dreaded email or phone call from an exasperated teacher certainly does not help the situation.

Our school district has an online Parent Portal where parents can log in and monitor their child’s grades throughout the year. Now with five children this can become a full-time job in and of itself, so thankfully over the years there has not been a big need in my family to utilize this site, except with one child in particular.

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Learning Styles

Learning Styles – Meeting the Needs of the Student

Aug 13, 2018
Yvonne Nelson-Reid, PhD
YVONNE NELSON-REID, PhD, is the Senior Development Associate at the Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT®), the publisher for the People Stripes® website, a mother of 5, writer, teacher (BEd, MA), depth psychologist – Jungian and archetypal studies (MA, PhD), and career coach. Parenting, teaching in a classroom, or on the ice as a figure skating coach has taught her a great deal about relationships and the importance of communication.
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Time management is a big deal in school, especially considering the incredibly busy lives so many of our kids lead. Clearly, some kids like structure, using a planner to organize their daily activities and homework assignments, and we know many who don't. Teaching kids in a way that honors their different learning styles can help everyone succeed.

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PeopleStripes.org article

What’s Your POS (Parent Operating System)? And Where Does it Come From?

Oct 12, 2018
Mollie Allen, MEd
MOLLIE ALLEN, MEd, is a certified coach, teacher and consultant working with groups and individuals. With undergraduate degrees in Child Development and Special Education and a M.Ed. in Administration and Supervision she worked in schools and in private practice with students of all ages and levels for 25 years.
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A major challenge for some parents is learning how to support your children without forgetting about yourself. I developed habits and policies – my Parent Operating System – through experience and reflection. A foundational piece came after one “my project is due tomorrow” event.

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Learning at Home

Pandemic - Online Learning Gone Viral

Apr 15, 2020
Yvonne Nelson-Reid, PhD
YVONNE NELSON-REID, PhD, is the Senior Development Associate at the Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT®), the publisher for the People Stripes® website, a mother of 5, writer, teacher (BEd, MA), depth psychologist – Jungian and archetypal studies (MA, PhD), and career coach. Parenting, teaching in a classroom, or on the ice as a figure skating coach has taught her a great deal about relationships and the importance of communication.
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When everyone is home and expected to be productive, how do we account for differences in our preferences for working and learning? This People Stripes article explores how you can help the Introverts and Extraverts in your family.

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How do you approach time?

Adapt or Manage: How Do You Approach Time?

Jun 02, 2021
Yvonne Nelson-Reid, PhD
YVONNE NELSON-REID, PhD, is the Senior Development Associate at the Center for Applications of Psychological Type (CAPT®), the publisher for the People Stripes® website, a mother of 5, writer, teacher (BEd, MA), depth psychologist – Jungian and archetypal studies (MA, PhD), and career coach. Parenting, teaching in a classroom, or on the ice as a figure skating coach has taught her a great deal about relationships and the importance of communication.
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Yvonne Nelson-Reid discusses the distinctions between preferences for Judging and Perceiving in her two youngest children, in grades 11 and 12, when they had the opportunity to take Advanced Placement Environmental Science together. The preferences indicate an important distinction in personalities, as preferences for Judging and Perceiving determine how people approach established deadlines.

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Extravert Learning Environment: Type Tip #10

If you ask an extravert to describe their ideal learning environment they typically have lots of things that make noise or stimulate like computers, friends, games, music, etc. However, when the task is mentally challenging the extravert REQUIRES quiet in order to concentrate. Every sound is a distraction from inner processing and an interruption to their thought flow. So students who may frequently study with groups, and with noise at certain times will need a quiet place to work. 

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