While some kids are just born with the ability to never study and get straight A’s, this is not the norm. Most teenagers need to study, and they need to study a lot. The problem arises when teens are so busy with their school activities and social life that they just don’t leave time for this seemingly boring task, resulting in less-than-stellar grades come report card time.
As a parent, it is your job to make sure your kid is learning all that he is supposed to. He’s only a teenager and has not yet been taught the right ways to retain knowledge. So help him out. With these study habits for teens, not only can your son remember the facts he needs to in order to pass his classes, but you might also get some bonding time with him. How cool would that be?
Use a Schedule
First and foremost, studying should never be saved for the last minute. It should be a daily activity that is just as common as brushing teeth. For some families, it works best to get the studying done as soon as the kids get home from school, while others prefer after-dinner study sessions. You can choose whatever time works the best for your family, but put it in the calendar and don’t pass it by. It’s also helpful to mark the calendar with any big tests or large project due dates just to make sure those are aptly prepared for.
Get Rid of Distractions
With the rampant use of cell phones and Facebook, it can sometimes seem impossible to keep your kid focused on his studies. But you must if you want him to succeed. There are several different apps or add-ons for the computer that will block whatever websites you tell them to for a designated period of time. When it comes to cell phones, just confiscate your kid’s during his studying. And always make sure to check on him regularly to make sure he is sticking to the task at hand.
Study in Sections
Think about how long you can sit still and work on a project before you start to lose focus. It’s probably only an hour or two. So you can’t expect much more from your son. Allow him to take a quick five-minute break every hour to renew his focus and give him a burst of energy. It’s not only good for his brain, but it’s essential for his eye health and ergonomics.
To really motivate your son, consider adding in a small reward at the end of each successful study session. Don’t look at it as a bribe, look at it as a pat on the back for a job well done. And you don’t even have to make it huge. It can be five minutes with his phone to catch up with friends, a refreshing snack, or even a quick round of his favorite video game. Hey, the reward system worked for potty training, didn’t it?
Make it Fun
When your son was little, you had an abundance of games and songs in your back pocket to teach him everything from the alphabet to animal sounds. Just because he’s older doesn’t mean he doesn’t like to have fun. Plus, turning the boring facts into an entertaining ordeal will also help your boy remember them better. So make up a song, draw up some flashcards, or do something else out-of-the-box that will keep your son engaged.
Scan Before Bed
No matter when your son does his studying, encourage him to jot down some notes on the most challenging details he just can’t seem to remember. Then, before bed, have him scan over these notes. The brain retains information the best right before the body goes to rest, so this is a great way to give your son’s memory an extra boost.
Let Him Sleep
Finally, if the day gets too busy and there just isn’t time for your kid to study, let him skip it, just this once (assuming there’s not a huge test the next day). Even though the consistency of studying is important, it’s more crucial for your son to get adequate shuteye. It will keep him healthier, make his brain work better, and help him focus easier in school.
When you incorporate these teen study tips into your routine, your son will be able to get through the school year with a lot less anxiety and a lot better grades. Which means you can relax a little, too, and actually look forward to report card day.