6 Tips For Helping Your Child Study

Getting kids to sit down and effectively study can be difficult, especially when they get older and start fighting for independence. That's why it's best to instill good learning and study habits in your kids when they are younger, if not to help them, then to at least take some of the weight off your own shoulders. But how do you sit down with a youngster and teach them about responsibility and time management? The best way to do it is to lead by example. If you make a habit of setting aside specific hours of the day to help your kids do their homework, it will help them appreciate the value of work ethic, and also of responsibility. Follow these six tips to help your student start studying better today.

1. Make a routine.

To get started, sit down and make a schedule for you and your kid(s) to sit down and do homework. Determine a time and a location where the both of your can work comfortably, and consider making a calendar with your study schedule so your kids can mark their progress as you go along. Pick a place like the kitchen table, or your study, if you have one in your home. In warmer weather you can also choose to sit on your back porch, or patio. As long as you have a place with a relaxing atmosphere that is clear of most distractions, you shouldn't have any problems.

2. Turn off electrical devices.

Even if you are outside, turn off your cell phone and any other electrical device that could potentially cause a distraction from your work. That includes phones, music players, television sets, and even computers if you don't need to utilize the internet for the assignments, although the chances of that being the case are incredibly slim these days. If you have a pet, put them in another room, or have them sit quietly by your feet.

3. Prioritize their assignments.

Once the two of you have sat down to work, you should begin by prioritizing their assignments. Those that are due the next day should be attended to first. If your child has a larger assignment, like a book report or essay to write, teach them how to approach long-term assignments by breaking the work down into smaller, individual steps. This will also teach them about organization and the importance of effective time management. If they do have to do a book report, or something along those lines, have them read the book to you, and discuss what happens to the characters and plot to show them how to think analytically.

4. Take breaks.

The first thing they tell you in Psych-101 is that the average attention span of a human being is only about twenty minutes or so. After that your brain starts to wander and the next thing you know, you come back to reality and have no idea what the instructor is talking about. For children, it is even shorter, which is why elementary education places such an emphasis on hands-on learning. To keep your kid(s) engaged in their homework, reward them with breaks, either every 15 minutes or after they finish each assignment, sort of like a reward system.

5. Discuss the material.

While you are helping your child with their homework, be sure to discuss the material with them in order to engage their minds in a bit of deeper thinking. Discussing different perspectives, and using real-world examples or scenarios they can relate-to to explain what things mean will help them better retain the information. It also helps them develop their critical thinking, and analytical skills, which will become more important as they age and move through each grade.

6. Take practice tests/quizzes.

To help your kid(s) retain the information they have gained from doing their homework, you should also give them practice tests and quizzes to do. Once they complete it, look it over and go over any questions that they missed. This will reinforce the information and help them to recall it on the real test.

Remember, the keys to learning are enjoyment and engagement. If you can find a way to make learning and doing homework fun for your kid(s), they will be more capable of retaining the information and even look forward to doing it. So be sure to do your best to make learning and study a fun occasion.