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11 Aug, 2022
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procrastinating child

Is Your Child Procrastinating? – H&S Education & Parenting

How To Deal With A Procrastinating Child Who Struggles To Stick To A Schedule

Is your child leaving his/her homework for the last minute? Is there difficulty sticking to a schedule? Dealing with a procrastinating child can be quite a challenge for parents. As a parent, you need to understand that children don’t always put off chores, or responsibilities just because they don’t feel like doing them or are being lazy. Sometimes a child could procrastinate for other reasons, and it’s therefore important to understand why, for example, he/she may be having trouble with a specific skill related to time management.

Below are 3 possible reasons that can make it difficult for a child to begin and complete a task:

Unable to plan & complete tasks due to problem with the working memory
Unable to maintain focus on a particular task
Unable to estimate time

If your child is procrastinating, here are some of the common patterns you might have noticed:

  1. Beginning a task but not completing it until last minute
  2. Pausing, getting distracted, and then losing track of time
  3. Avoiding a particular task as it seems too difficult
  4. Running late most of the time and taking forever to get the task done
  5. When asked if task is completed, and the response is yes, when it isn’t actually done

How Can You Help?

Stop Assuming & Labelling Your Child ‘Lazy’- This can not only make your child feel bad about themself, but also doesn’t help the situation. A child with acalculia will put off his maths homework because he/she is struggling.

Use A Timer To Help Adhere To Time- Whether it’s a visual timer or a countdown clock, this can help children who can’t estimate time, stick to the time, by reminding them how much time they have left.

Plan “Brain Breaks”- These can help your child stay on track. Planning before the child gets distracted, frustrated and loses focus, is advisable. This can be 10-15 mins after work for younger kids, and 20-30 mins after work for older kids.

Break The Task Down Into Simple, Manageable Chunks- Breaking tasks down, and even setting deadlines for each chunk, can help children who struggle with organization and planning.

Don’t Resolve To Punishment- Scolding & punishing a child who is struggling can only make things worse, shaking his/her confidence. Instead, use ‘Reward’ to encourage your child.


procrastinating child
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