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Homework Helper


Help Your Student Make Sense of Math


Parents in helping children learn, one goal is to assist them in becoming critical and independent thinkers.  You can help by asking questions that guide, without telling them what to do.  By providing good questions and then listening to their responses you can help children make sense of the mathematics, build self-confidence and encourage mathematical thinking and communication.  A good question opens up a problem for analysis and supports different ways of thinking about it.  This sheet has some questions you might try.  None of the questions can be answered with a simple “yes” or “no.”






Getting Started Questions

  • What are you being asked to find or do?

  • What do you need to know to find or do that?

  • What information do you already know?

  • What terms do you understand/ not understand?

  • What similar problems have you solved that could help?

  • Where can you begin your work?

  • How can you organize what you know to help you get started?






While Working Question

  • How can you organize what you know to help you do your work?

  • Can you make a drawing or diagram (model) to explain your thinking?

  • What are some other possibilities?

  • What would happen if…?

  • Can you describe an approach or plan you can use to solve this part?

  • What do you need to do next?

  • Do you see any patterns or relationships that will help solve this part?

  • How does this relate to…?

  • Can you make a prediction (conjecture) and test it?

  • Why did you…?

  • What assumptions are you making?





Double Checking the Answer Questions

  • How do you know your solution/answer/conclusion is reasonable?

  • How did you arrive at your answer?

  • How could you convince me your answer makes sense?

  • What did you try that did not work?

  • Has the question been answered?





Responding to Answers

  • Tell me more.

  • Can you explain that in a different way?

  • Is there another possibility or strategy that would work?

  • Is there a more efficient method you can use?

  • Help me understand this part.






Success in school is tied to attendance, participation, involvement, time management, good study habits, a positive attitude and homework!



Three keys to helping students complete homework:

  • Ask to see what it is they are supposed to do.

  • Provide a quiet, calm, and undisturbed place for them to study.

  • Encourage reading.






I will be available before and after school many days if students fall behind, are confused, or just need a place to do school work but my official tutorial will be on Wednesdays.

                                        -Mr. T