To develop study habits

in Children

The basic rule is, "Don't do the assignments yourself." It's not your homework—it's your child's. "I've had kids hand in homework that's in their parents' handwriting," one eighth-grade teacher complains. Doing assignments for your child never help him to understand and use information. And it will not help him become confident in his own abilities. Here are some ways that you can provide guidance without doing your child's homework or assignments. Help your child to make a schedule and put it in a place where you'll see it often. Writing out assignments or homework will get him used to the idea of keeping track of what's due and when. If your child is not yet able to write, write it for him until he can do it himself. A book bag or backpack will make it easier for your child to carry homework to and from college. Providing homework books in which your child can tuck his assignments for safekeeping also can help him to stay organized.

Teachers generally give students tips on how to study. But it takes time and practice to develop good study habits. To reinforce good habits at home, you can:
Help your child manage time to complete assignments. For example, if your eighth grader has a biology report due in three weeks, discuss all the steps she needs to take to complete it on time, including:
selecting a topic;
doing research by looking up books and other materials on the topic and taking notes;
figuring out what questions to discuss;
drafting an outline;
writing a rough draft; and
Revising and completing the final draft.
Encourage your child to make a chart that shows how much time she expects to spend on each step.

Help your child to get started when he has to do research reports or other big assignments. Encourage him to use the library. If he isn't sure where to begin, tell him to ask the librarian for suggestions. If he's using a computer/laptop for online reference resources—whether the computer is at home, college or the library—make sure he's getting whatever help he needs to use it properly and to find age-appropriate Web sites. Many private and public libraries have homework centers with tutors or other kinds of one-on-one assistance. After your child has completed the research, listen as he tells you the points he wants to make in the report.

Give practice tests. Help your third grader prepare for a spelling test by saying the words as she writes them. Have her correct her own test as you spell each word.
Help your child avoid last-minute cramming. Review with your fifth grader how and what to study for his social studies test long before it's to be given. You can have him work out a schedule of what he needs to do to, make up a practice test and write down answers to the questions he's made up.

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This article was published on 2012/03/07