Teaching Your Child Study Skills

Written By: Mary M. Alward
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Many children who have the capability to get good grades experience frustration because of low academic scores. The reason for this is that they don't have the necessary study skills.

In order to be successful in school, children must possess excellent study skills. If they know how to study, they will develop a positive attitude and feel confident and competent. This allows them to realize they have control over their grades and life in general. Possessing good study skills also assists children in forming skills to assist them in their careers as adults.

Both parents and teachers need to assist children in forming good study habits. Each child has his own individual learning style. Kids need to explore different avenues of learning to determine how they learn best. Once that is accomplished, they need to establish a system of studying that fits their particular style of learning. Whatever study system they implement should be used on a regular basis.

If you're the parent of an elementary student, you probably help your child with their homework and studying. Keep in mind that middle and high school students also need parental support. Quizzing your child through middle and high school assists them in making better grades and is a positive for everyone concerned.

Enhancing Study Skills

There are several ways to enhance your child's study skills:

Always make sure homework and studying is of the highest priority.

Make homework time fun. It should be associated with affection, freedom, love and self-control.

Teach your child learning and organization skills during homework time.

Set reasonable expectations and reasonable consequence if your child doesn't meet those expectations. Follow through.

Make Homework a Positive Experience

As a parent it is imperative to make homework time a positive experience. Here are some tips:

Always support, praise and reward your child for completing his homework.

If you child needs help, give it in a non-critical way.

Encourage your child to complete all assignments and projects in such a way that he will be proud of his efforts. This allows him to have control over his level of competence and learning.

Help your child make subjects that he dislikes more fun and less frustrating. Suggest he complete five questions and then take a break to exercise or stretch. Allow him to play with a favorite toy or participate in a favorite hobby for a few minutes before completing his homework.

Encourage study groups with peers. Research has proven that group study is much more effective than studying alone.

When homework is complete, allow your child to play with a friend, play a favorite game, watch a favorite TV show or engage in a favorite hobby.

Always take time to listen to your child's concerns and help him to come up with a positive solution.

Quiz your child for tests and exams. An excellent time to do this is while driving to an extracurricular activity or driving home from school or shopping.

Encourage your child to think of himself as an excellent scholar and then help him make his vision become a reality.

Organizational Skills

Children will find it much easier to study if they possess good organizational skills.

Buy your child an assignment book. He should note assignments daily and check them off when they're completed.

Teach your child how to break long-term assignments down into smaller projects. This makes it easier to complete.

Teach your child how to estimate the length of time it will take him to complete assignments and projects so he can make a realistic schedule.

Teach your child to study for tests and begin assignments well in advance. Leaving them to the last minute will leave him frustrated and often last minute projects get low scores.

Teach your child to lengthen his concentration. This will allow him to complete homework assignments in a shorter length of time and his scores will be higher. Elementary students should take a break every 10 to 15 minutes; middle school students every 20 to 30 minutes and high school students every 40 to 50 minutes.

Teach your child to review and correct notes and to highlight important information.

Encourage your child to improve his reading skills to make assignments and projects easier to complete.

Encourage your child to improve his vocabulary by using a dictionary and thesaurus.

Study Techniques

Teach your child to study using these techniques:

Look over the material and his notes to gain orientation.

Write down questions before he begins to read the material thoroughly.

Read through his notes, make a list of points and answer the questions that he has written down.

Review notes several times before you quiz him.

Review notes daily before a test and write down and answer questions or ask you to quiz him.

Ensure your child understands the material in notes and textbooks.

Encourage your child to write drafts before a final written assignment.

Teach your child how to proofread and revise his notes.

Teach your child that tests and exams are a time to show off his knowledge.

Never act as a tutor for your child. Many high schools have honor students who enjoy tutoring elementary and middle school students.

It is imperative that your child has good organization and study habits in order for him to get good academic scores. This will give him confidence and before you know it, his academic scores will soar. Yes, Kids Can Fly!

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