Help Your Child Improve Study Skills in 4 Steps
Sep 22, 2009 Study Skills 2146 Views
You can help your child improve study skills and do better in school. The following 4 steps to will help your child improve grades and develop self confidence.
In my years as a classroom teacher I noticed many students lack organizational skills when it came to notebooks and homework. Most students don't know how to organize school materials. You can help them start developing good study techniques by having them empty their backpack and notebook(s). Discard anything that is no longer needed. Then move on to the notebook(s).
Notebooks should have paper and dividers. Label each divider. There should be one for: homework, notes, and handouts. Some teachers require a separate notebook for their subject. Each notebook should be organized the same way.
Loose papers should be placed in the proper place, in the notebook, at the end of each day. If they remain loose, they may get misplaced or, even worse, lost.
When they finish with an assignment, it should be placed as the top page in the correct subject. When they open the notebook at the beginning of class, they will see it. In this way, they are less likely to forget to turn it in.
Make sure your child has the supplies that will be needed during the semester.
There are many stores that offer school supplies for relatively cheap prices before each semester begins. In order to develop good study habits your child should have:
- Lined paper
- File folders
- Pencil sharpener
- 3 hole punch
- 3 x 5 cards
3. Study Area
Every child needs their own study area. It should be away from the center of activity and noise. A bedroom or den is a good place. If they do not have their own desk, a table will do. The supplies they will need to do their homework should be available on the desk or shelf. If they don't have a desk with drawers, a small filing cabinet or crates will serve the purpose.
In addition to the supplies in the backpack, a study area should also contain pens, pencils and a 3 hole punch, dictionary and thesaurus. Creating a study space, with supplies at hand, is an effective way to help your child improve study skills.
4. Study Time
Set aside a block of time for homework for each school day. Try to leave weekends free for other activities. If possible, homework time should be the same time each day: 4 PM - 6PM. They may not need all the time or, in some cases, may need more. Be sure to build in breaks. A ten minute break between assignments will help create better concentration.
Do not ask your child to do chores during this time. It's strictly for study. Asking your child to set the table or walk the dog will send mixed messages about why study time is important.
Have a large write on calendar available on the desk or bulletin board. In addition to the study time, write in due dates and special projects in the appropriate date. List doctor and dentist appointments and all other activities. This gives an overview of how busy your child is. There should be some "free" time to pursue interest and hobbies or just for play.
Spend some time each day and discuss the school day and assignments. Make sure you know what is expected. Look over what the teacher hands out. This keeps you in touch with your child and shows you care about them as well as their grades.
Having worked with students for many years, I can say these four study tips have helped to develop good study habits. Following these tips to help your child improve study skills will lead to better grades, less conflict over homework and development of self confidence.