Tag: Education

Helping Kids with Homework

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Posted on by Leonardo Rocker (Quirky Kid Staff)

Helping Children with HomeworkNaturally, parents want to help their children and to see them succeed, but where do you draw the line with regards to their homework?

Parents often assist children by sitting down to help with homework, sometimes checking for mistakes, and occasionally completing entire projects.

Some research shows that helping with homework can be beneficial for children’s performance at school. However, other studies show different  results about helping children with homework.

The Quirky Kid clinic  suggests that the difference between parental involvement being beneficial or not is dependent on the type and the amount of involvement.

By constantly cutting in on the job your kids are doing, you may risk undermining their confidence. This may make them feel inadequate when it comes to completing tasks on time or may inhibit them from developing the knowledge and skills to do it themselves.

Tips to assist your children with homework.

  • It is best to establish a routine for homework at the beginning of the year. Decide with your child when and where homework should be completed. Creating a homework schedule together is a great way to discuss this, and put down in writing what you agree on.
  • You can make homework something children will look forward to by making it special one-on-one time with  you. But remember to let children keep most control of it – make sure the pencil is in their hand, not yours.
  • To help children focus at homework time, set some boundaries, ensure they have a clear work space, and establish some goals, such as a time limit. Additionally, by placing a clock near their work space children will be able to monitor their own time.
  • Provide your children some wind down time after school. Allowing them to play for a while and have a healthy snack, will help them to concentrate when they start their homework.
  • Many schools have implemented a homework policy. If you think your child is receiving too much homework, or it is too difficult, get in contact with the school to discuss your concerns.

Most importantly, by allowing children to complete homework themselves, they will have greater sense of achievement. Additionally, providing parents with a legitimate reason to pile on the praise. Remember to always praise effort rather than intelligence.

Need more help?

  1. The Quirky Kid Clinic provides private consultations and a range of resources to assist with homework challenges and performance. Please contact us to make an appointment or visit our resources page.
  2. You should also check a great book for sale at the Quirky Kid online ShoppeHow to do your Homework without throwing up – check it out.


Information for this fact sheet was taken from an interview with Child Psychologist Kimberley O’Brien, and the following article.

Hoover-Dempsey, K.V., Battiato, A.C., Walker, J.M., Reed, R.P., DeJong, J.M., and Jones, K.P. (2001) Parental Involvement in homework. Educational Psychologist, 36, 3, 195-209

Homework @ Herald Sun

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Posted on by Leonardo Rocker (Quirky Kid Staff)

Kimberley O’Brien, our principal child psychologist, discussed helping children with their homework, with Herald Sun reporter, Meg Mason. You can find useful, practical and informative advice about parenting by visiting our resources page, – or discussing it on our forum.

To view the full article please visit the Herald Sun online.

If you have a story and would like to discuss it with us, please contact us to schedule a time. Kimberley O’Brien enjoys sharing the best of her therapeutic moments with the media. View our media appearances to-date. Visit our website for more information about our clinic and our team.

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ADHD and Education

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Posted on by Leonardo Rocker (Quirky Kid Staff)

Recent discussions on education is pointing to the need for re-thinking the way children receive education. Here at the Quirky Kid Clinic, we have long advocated on a child-focused approach where each child receives the most appropriate education strategy or intervention. We work from the child’s perspective, making use of strong creative approaches and make sure parent and child understand each other. To-date, we offer consultancy to a range of educational institutions

The same perspective – on the education system and ADHD – was echoed by creativity expert Sir Ken Robinson. During his presentation, he makes a strong argument against the use of medication as the principal method of treatment with children diagnosed with ADHD. This is also a strong focus of Quirky Kid’s work with children and families experiencing ADHD.

In summary, he indicates that our children are living during the mot stimulating period of our existence and we are penalizing children and demanding they listen to, at times, boring non- interactive classes – by medicating them. There are much more to his presentation, so please watch below:

Please see the video below:

If you would like more information on ADHD interventions at the Quirky Kid Clinic, please contact us.

Educational Revolutions

Recent discussions on education are pointing to the need for re-thinking the way children receive education. Here at the Quirky Kid Clinic we have long advocated on a child-focused approach where each child receives the most appropriate education strategy or intervention. We work from the child’s perspective, making use of strong creative approaches and ensure parent and child understand each other. To-date, we provide consultancy to a range of educational institutions

The same perspective – relating to the education system and ADHD – was echoed by creativity expert Sir Ken Robinson. During his presentation, he makes a strong argument against the use of medication as the principal m

Educational Revolutions

Recent discussions on education are pointing to the need for re-thinking the way children receive education. Here at the Quirky Kid Clinic we have long advocated on a child-focused approach where each child receives the most appropriate education strategy or intervention. We work from the child’s perspective, making use of strong creative approaches and ensure parent and child understand each other. To-date, we provide consultancy to a range of educational institutions

The same perspective – relating to the education system and ADHD – was echoed by creativity expert Sir Ken Robinson. During his presentation, he makes a strong argument against the use of medication as the principal method of treatment with children diagnosed with ADHD. This is also a strong focus of Quirky Kid’s work with children and families experiencing ADHD.

In summary, he indicates that our children are living during the mot stimulating period of our existence and we are penalizing children and demanding they listen to, at times, boring non- interactive classes – by medicating them. There are much more to his presentation, so please watch below:

Please see the video below:

If you would like more information on ADHD interventions at the Quirky Kid Clinic, please contact us.

ethod of treatment with children diagnosed with ADHD. This is also a strong focus of Quirky Kid’s work with children and families experiencing ADHD.

In summary, he indicates that our children are living during the mot stimulating period of our existence and we are penalizing children and demanding they listen to, at times, boring non- interactive classes – by medicating them. There are much more to his presentation, so please watch below:

Please see the video below:

If you would like more information on ADHD interventions at the Quirky Kid Clinic, please contact us.

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Kids and Facebook @ 7 News

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Posted on by Leonardo Rocker (Quirky Kid Staff)

Kimberley O’Brien, our principal child psychologist, discussed the use of Facebook and study time with report Pippa Gardner from Channel 7 . You can find  useful, practical and informative advice about parenting by visiting our resources page, – or discussing it on our forum.

Watch the segment below or visit Channel 7 website.

If you have a story and would like to discuss it with us, please contact us to schedule a time. Kimberley O’Brien enjoys sharing the best of her therapeutic moments with the media. View our media appearances to-date. Visit our website for more information about Quirky Kid Clinic.

Vocabulary in Primary School

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Posted on by Leonardo Rocker (Quirky Kid Staff)

Vocabulary knowledge has a wide-ranging influence on a child’s reading comprehension ability. Therefore it is important to ensure that students are being taught vocabulary in an effective and long-lasting manner. Below is a program designed by Dr Lorraine Hammond from Edith Cowan University on effective vocabulary instruction however, there are other ways of teaching vocabulary as well.

Dr Hamond separates words in Tiers. Examples of Tier 1, 2 and 3 words are below:

  • Tier 1 (everyday words) – lamp, spider, shirt, flower, mouse
  • Tier 2 (language of academics, business, government) – illusion, improvise, meticulous, glimpse, edible
  • Tier 3 (domain-specific terminology) – hydraulic, asymmetrical, monograph, periodical

1. Decide which Tier 2 words are relevant and teachable to your students.

When choosing tier 2 words to teach your students, it is important to consider the importance and utility of the word, as well as its instructional potential: you mus be able to explain the words using concrete, simple terms. It is also important to consider whether the students already have the vocabulary to explain this word.

2. Write some child-friendly definitions that are meaningful to your students

Use language that your students are familar with and try to capture the definition of the word in its broadest application. For example:

Furious: Someone who is furious is extremely angry

Premonition: If you have a premonition, you have a feeling that something is going to happen, often something unpleasant.

3. Provide an additional context for a word

For example, Furious doesn’t always mean extremely angry. Furious can also be used to describe something that is done with great energy, effort, speed or violence.

4. Provide opportunities for students to actively process word meanings

The key to effective activities is that they require students to attend to the meaning of a word in order to apply it to a given situation. Some examples of opportunities for students to engage in words include:

  • Word associations
  • Have you ever? questions
  • Idea completions
  • Questions, reasons, examples, making choices

5. Provide for a high frequency of encounters over time

Frequent encounters with words make new knowledge ‘stick’. It is recommended that teachers provide their students with 10 new words per week, with daily activities, as well as ongoing revision of words that have already been introduced.

6. Review student learning

The most effective way to review student learning is by asking, specifically about the new vocabulary. Learners need six (meaningful) exposures to a new word during the initial lesson and at least 30 additional exposure during the ensuing month.

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Information for this page was taken from Dr. Lorraine Hammond’s lecture, “Teaching Vocabulary: One component of reading comprehension” presented at the SPELD Conference 2009 on 7th October, 2009 . The Quirky Kid team attended to this event.

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