4 Tips for Teaching Good Study Habits to Teens
By Heather Delaney Reese, It’s a Wonderful Life. Heather Delaney Reese is a paid spokesperson for HEALTHY ESSENTIALS®
Kids have a lot on their plates, and perhaps there’s no greater pressure than the workload of school. When it comes to doing your homework night in and night out, it can be tough to maintain focus and motivation – I remember this myself when I was a teen. That’s why I make sure to take steps ahead of time to set my children up to succeed. The good news is that by instilling study habits in your teens early on, they can stay engaged with their studies and have a happy, successful school year.
Here are some of my favorite study habits:
1. Keep a daily to-do list: This one is small yet so important and can really impact a teen's success, especially when it comes to their studies. Get them in the habit of writing out or using an app on their phone to keep track of everything they need to accomplish that day. Have them highlight the amount of time they need to dedicate to studying, and then help them build the rest of their list around the time they have available after studying. This is also a great lesson in time management and prioritizing.
2. Create an electronics-free study area: When we created study areas for our teens, we made sure that they were motivating, but more importantly distraction free. That means there are no electronics there unless they are needed for the project. It not only helps keep their brains focused on studying, but it also helps them stay organized when they have a specific area that’s just for studying. What my girls love best about having a designated study area is that it provides them with the change of scenery they need to get their work done in a soothing atmosphere.
3. Keep a well-stocked supply of study necessities: Now that you have a study area for the kids, the next step is to make sure they have everything they need to get their schoolwork done and power through! While some projects may call for special items, I have a few basics I always keep in the house to help my kids. Here’s a quick checklist of my top items:
• Notebooks and scrap paper
• Pens, pencils, highlighters and/or markers
• A good reading lamp
• VISINE® DRY EYE RELIEF
• Folders and/or binders
• Paper clips
• Desktop or laptop computer
• Computer paper/printer
4. Take breaks: It seems counter-productive to take a break in the midst of a good study session, but taking breaks often is important. We structure study time in 30-minute cycles. That seems to be the best amount of time for teens to really focus on a subject and then give their minds a chance to relax, have a snack and get back to work. Our breaks are right around 15 minutes.
Heather Delaney Reese is a paid spokesperson for HEALTHY ESSENTIALS®