Instilling a little order in your child's study habits will allow a lot more time for actual studying. Help your child put these five organizational tips into practice to build good habits.
- Set up a Designated Study Space. Make sure there's an area of your house just for homework, with all the supplies she needs in bins and boxes. Provide plenty of space for books and set up baskets for papers so your child can find old homework to review for tests, and keep frequently used resources, like a dictionary and thesaurus, handy.
- Color Code Subjects. Buy school supplies for each subject in a different color, so your child can see at a glance which folder, notebook, and binder has to do with which subject.
- Create a Cubby Hole at Home. Place a crate or sturdy box near your front door so your child can keep his backpack and other school items in one spot. Teach him to put anything he needs for the next day in that place as well. That way, he'll know where his stuff is when he's looking for it.
- Use a Calendar. Give your child a date book or other portable calendar that she can bring with her to school. Teach her to write down assignments, tests, play dates, lessons, and other plans regularly. Also have her write down her classmates' phone numbers and e-mail addresses so she can find and contact them easily.
- Set a Good Example. If you keep things neat and organized in your own life, your child is more likely to follow suit. If he has trouble making "to-do" lists, sit down and make one alongside him. Seeing you turn off the TV at a regular time to pay bills or even just to read will show him the importance of setting aside time to do things and sticking to it.