A large part of your child’s learning journey during the school years will involve time spent doing homework and studying for tests and exams. For children to learn effectively and do well in school, good study habits must be established from as early as possible.
Here are some simple things that you can do to help your child develop good study habits that will set them up for academic success.
Space for study
Before getting into the specifics of the study session itself, one of the first things to do to instill good study habits in your child is to designate a space at home which is conducive for studying.
Depending on the room and space availability in your home, this can either be a desk in his/her bedroom or a separate study room that is away from the bedroom. If space is an issue, you could also create a study area in the dining area where there a table is available for your child to sit down and organise his/her study materials.
Whichever option you choose to designate as your child’s study space, the rule of thumb is to ensure that the area is away from distractions such as the TV and other family activities that may be going on.
Help your child to get organised
Once you have designated a suitable study area for your child, the next thing to do is to help him/her organise the space and his study materials. Some children struggle to keep things organised when it comes to studying, which then leads them to lose focus or view these study sessions as a chore.
Provide your child all the materials he/she needs to get homework done and to revise at home (e.g. stationery such as pens, pencils, erasers, glue, paper/notebooks and filing trays). Then, create a system to help him/her keep the study materials organised – such as an in and out tray to differentiate the pile of homework to be done and those that have already been completed, and folders to keep materials from the various subjects.
Give your child a notebook or a “To do list” planner to mark down the homework for the day and the due dates for each, and encourage him/her to update this daily to keep track of his/her work. You can also hang a mini bulletin board at your child’s study space to post up important materials such as the daily school timetable and the spelling list for English and Mother Tongue.
Establish study routines
To encourage your child to develop good study habits and be consistent in his/her efforts all year round (including term breaks!), create a study routine for him/her to follow every day. This involves setting aside time for homework and study at home after school and CCA hours, and weaving this in amidst meals and relaxation time as well.
Having a set routine helps children to make a habit out of studying, and as they grow older, they will be able to prioritise study time and make tweaks to their daily routines accordingly.
Set study goals
Talk to your child about setting goals to ensure that all homework are completed on time and that he/she has something to work towards throughout the learning journey.
For example, if your child receives a worksheet at the start of the week which is due mid-week, go through with him/her the sections that need to be completed. Identify those that he/she is familiar with and can start working on first, followed by sections which he/she finds challenging and set aside a specific day and time to go through this so that he/she can better understand the concepts and eventually work out the answer in time for submission.
Let your child study at his own pace
So, you have done all that is necessary to support your child in getting on the right path towards good study habits. Now, you can take a step back and let him/her study at a pace that he/she is comfortable with – and assure your child that you are always available for guidance should he/she needs it along the way.
If you are looking to supplement your child’s study session at home with a programme that empowers him/her to make progress academically, at a pace that he/she is comfortable with, you might want to consider Kumon and consider how your child can benefit from the programme.
An individualised learning method that is tailored to your child’s learning ability, Kumon allows your child to study independently at a level that is “just right” for him/her. This is determined when your child takes a diagnostic test upon enrolment to determine his level so that he starts off with the appropriate level of Kumon worksheets.
The way that the Kumon learning method is structured helps your child to progress in small steps at a pace suitable for him/her. Apart from providing opportunities to develop foundational knowledge of topics studied in school, your child will also get to study advanced topics and concepts beyond his/her current level in school.
Ultimately, your child will be encouraged to self-learn as he/she reads the small-step worksheets, think of solutions and complete the exercises on his own. With personalised guidance from the instructors, your child will develop the confidence to think, do and learn more – and this helps to build a positive attitude towards learning as he/she takes pleasure in study time and constantly strives to improve.
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