It’s that time of year again. Students are going to be going home and asking for help on their homework, and parents are going to be hurriedly scurrying from soccer games to dinner to PTA meetings. Homework is hard, and parent engagement is important, so today we’re excited to share out this list of 40 resources that teachers can provide to parents to help them stay organized and engaged while making sure their students are succeeding.
Apps for Parents’ Personal Organization
- Cozi: Everything you need to stay organized
- Google Calendar: Program notifications, enter daily homework
- Google Drive & Docs: Sometimes the most helpful are also the most prevalent.
- LaLa Lunchbox: Plan meals and get kids involved in the process
- Naviance: Helpful for organizing the college and career process
- Safari, Chrome or other Bookmarking System: Simple, but useful
- Timepage: Calendar+weather app from Moleskine (yes, the notebook company) with an attractive design
- Trello:Project management tool with every-day applications
- Wunderlist: Getting Smart uses this for our task list needs
Informing & Organizing Parents
Parent Communication Apps
- Class Dojo: Behavior management app that shares announcements and photos with parents
- Edmodo for Parents: Free app to stay in touch with learning activities
- Infinite Campus: Connecting parents with student progress
- ParentLink: Free app from Blackboard connecting schools and parents
- PowerSchool Mobile: Free app connects parents to widely used gradebook
- Remind: Simple free messaging system
- SchoolWay: Free app from Jostens connects parents and school activities
- Sports Engine: useful for extracurricular activities
We’re sure we missed some great resources. What would you add? Share in the comments section below, and don’t forget to check out our other recent Smart Lists at our Smart List Series Page.
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Boston Public Library locations offer free after-school homework help and mentorship provided by high-achieving high school students. This is open to students in grades K-8. No registration is required.
Beginning in 2014, the Boston Public Library is collaborating with Harvard University to provide SmartTALK training to Homework Help mentors. Since its launch in 2008, SmartTALK has worked to help adequately prepare and train educators and mentors in Cambridge and Boston to help children of all ages develop strong academic and social skills outside of school hours.
Read about our collaboration and the first Homework Help-SmartTALK training of the year in the Harvard Gazette article, “Harvard Helping the Helpers.”
In-person Homework Help
- The Homework Help program for 2017-2018 will run from September 18, 2017-May 24, 2018.
- We are hiring mentors to work at the Lower Mills Branch for the 2017-2018 school year!
- Read the mentor job description before applying. To be eligible to work as Homework Help Mentor, you must:
- Be a high school sophomore, junior, or senior, have a 3.0 or higher GPA
- Enjoy working with children
- Be able to work 3:30-5:30 p.m. after school at least 2 days per week, September through May
- Bilingual candidates are especially encouraged to apply
- For more information about homework help or to schedule an interview, email Rachel Keeler firstname.lastname@example.org or call 617–859–2325.
Boston Teacher's Union tutors
- BTU teachers are available to help students K-12 with homework for free on select weekdays from 4-6 p.m. during the school year. The program runs September 26, 2016 through May 22, 2017. See flyer for more details.
Online Homework Help
Online help courtesy of the BPL
- LearningExpress Library can help students from grade school through college improve their skills by taking practice tests, completing exercises, and reading eBooks. What's more, LearningExpress can help college-bound students prepare for the ACT, SAT, and other standardized tests.
- Look for books, CDs, movies, and more in the BPL catalog.
- Search for articles and use books online with our student electronic resources.
Other online help
Other sources for homework help and after school programs in Boston
- BOSTONavigator - The place to search for out-of school time programming in Boston.
- Boston Youth Zone - Find activities, opportunities, and other fun stuff for kids and teens, plus important information and resources for parents.
Download the Homework Help schedule with location information (PDF)