Whether your child starts kindergarten or heads to college, you want to make sure they are prepared for success in school. While you might not be able to sit alongside them in the classroom, you can still set them up with good study habits as they navigate the world.
Here are tips for helping your child develop strong, effective study habits.
Learn how to identify distractions with your child
Kids with trouble focusing can be easily distracted. At home, hearing siblings playing might make it hard to concentrate and when studying with friends around, it is always tempting to goof off.
The most common distraction for students, of course, is their mobile devices. A smart habit to start early is to have your child designate a place outside of their study area to stash their phone or tablet during study time. If they need their phone’s calculator, try setting it to airplane mode to disable talk and text.
If possible, find a study space outside of the home’s common areas. For many children, listening to music in the background can actually help them drown out other distracting noises, allowing them to concentrate on their studies.
Make use of at-home learning technology
There is technology everywhere, and it isn't going anywhere. Almost anything can be learned online, anytime you want, and learning how to use online resources is key to your child’s future success in school and life.
Learn how to navigate educational apps and technology with your child. Set appropriate limits and monitor as needed to keep the focus on their homework, even if they are using online resources to complete that homework. There is a fine line between online research to enrich their work, and getting lost surfing the web.
Designate study space
All of us spruced up our home offices during the pandemic and for good reason! It’s easier to focus and stay productive when you’re in a space you enjoy, and it’s the same for your child. A kitchen table can be a great place for younger children to work, but as your child moves into middle and high school, they will need a desk they can customize and settle into. One that is away from the distractions of the main living areas.
Keep school supplies like pens and notebooks right there so your student never has to hunt for them. Make sure the space is near an electrical outlet for charging laptops.
Encourage regular but short breaks
It is indeed true to state that - All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy. Studying for hours at a stretch can make it a boring exercise for your kids.
Make sure your child takes breaks in between to refresh their brain. During the break, urge your kid to take a walk, grab a snack, check in with friends or work on a hobby.
Organize study and homework projects
Get a large calendar that allows space for jotting things down in the daily boxes. Have your child use different bold colored dry erase markers to write exam dates, reports that are coming due etc. This will serve as a reminder so that assignments are set aside at the last minute.
Don’t shy away from praising your child
Everyone loves to be appreciated and it is important for you as a parent to praise your children to keep them motivated. Positive parenting and celebrating their wins (both big and small) may be just the encouragement they need to keep going.
Give importance to playing and getting enough sleep
It is easy to overlook your kid’s extracurricular activities and sleeping habits, but it is very important for their success. During study breaks, or before and after study sessions, encourage your child to go outside and play. Even more important, it is vital that a developing child has enough and adequate rest time and that means going to sleep at a reasonable hour.
Set a schedule
Set a specific time for homework every day. By blocking out homework time, you and your child will remember not to make plans that interfere with studying. While it may be necessary to vary homework time to accommodate sports or other activities after school, knowing that there is time set aside every day for schoolwork helps kids remember to do their homework.
Good study habits are essential for developing children into lifelong learners. In the real world, time management, goal setting, and balancing self-care are important skills. It prepares your child for all of life's challenges when you help them thrive in school.