While one in five kids may have a learning disability that requires one-on-one intervention, others may simply need to develop good study habits to improve their grades.
But good study habits don’t always come easily or naturally. You can help your ‘tween or teen develop them with a few easy steps, and save both of you hours of stress and arguments.
Organization is key. Using a paper calendar, the calendar program on your child’s computer or one offered through the school’s online system, have your child plot the dates of all upcoming tests and assignments. Use a different color for each class to avoid confusion and enable your child to see requirements for each one at a glance. Then break down how to prepare for each test or report by week and by month — this may involve specifics like due dates for drafts and revisions of papers, or goals for reading chapters in a book.
Also have your child create a daily schedule that includes homework assignments as well as components of the larger deadlines, ranked by importance.
Next, create a designated space for study with essentials like highlighters, a calculator and printer. It may help to post a printout of each daily checklist above the desk — some kids become more motivated with every item they check off.
Understood.org, a site created by 15 nonprofits for parents of kids with learning and attention issues, has a wealth of advice. It suggests using a “worry pad.” When your child is distracted by thoughts or concerns, he or she writes them down on the pad as a reminder to address them later — after homework is done.
Find more tips to help your child develop good study habits at Understood.org.
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