Why Consistency is Key for Kids
While you’re reading this article, I’d bet within your reach is a planner. Whether it’s digital or paper, most of us use planners because knowing what’s going to happen is important. Children of all ages also find comfort in knowing what lies ahead. It makes everything from getting up in the morning to starting homework in the afternoon easier and more enjoyable for everyone. Find out how you can create consistency in your child’s life; they’ll thank you for it later.
1. Fledgling Organizers
Even if children are not in school yet, they will still benefit from consistency. You don’t have to make things complicated or detailed, just make routine an everyday thing. For example, start with bed time. Acting out the same steps at the same time every night will make transitioning to bed much easier. Always show praise for completing routines, this will build confidence and encourage good behavior. As children become old enough to start school, a morning routine is another option explore.
2. Apprentice Planners
For the elementary and middle school aged, utilize schedules to first organize after school hours. This time can include studying, chores, free time, sports, or activities. Participation is important, so include older children in the creation of the schedule. Once the agenda is created, stay consistent; maintaining it is easier than starting over.
Homework time should happen relatively soon after returning home. As the afternoon progresses, younger children tend to tire and become frustrated sooner. Set them up for success and get the tough stuff out of the way early. Does your student hate spelling or struggle with fractions? Have them start with those difficult subjects first. The information will be most fresh in their minds from the day and getting it out of the way will leave them with a sense of accomplishment.
When it comes to homework time, it’s helpful to keep an eye on younger ones. Create a space you can observe them in, and is also relatively distraction free and quiet. If you prefer a general “study time,” ensure it is goal oriented. Younger children have a hard time focusing their minds on what’s important if there is no direction. With maturity comes responsibility, so as they move into middle school, children can spend more time studying unassisted.
Should students study on the weekend? It shouldn’t be the sixth school day of the week, but thirty minutes to an hour of review over the weekend is perfect in preparation for the upcoming week. The longer we go not using information we learned, the more difficult it is to recall. All these tips work to create good habits for high school when self-discipline will be more important.
3. Established Coordinators
High school students should be able to study unassisted, but reminders and check-ins are a way to stay supportive. Adolescents may begin to feel bored with routine, but continued practice is important for college. To change things up, encourage them to try different study locations, at home or at the local community center or library. Discuss procrastination, specifically how to identify distractions, and what to do to remove or lessen those interruptions. Typically, removing a cell phone and sitting away from televisions or computers is helpful. If computers are necessary, use tasking filters like LeechBlock and StayFocusd to keep focused on the assignment at hand.
We all struggle with distraction, procrastination, and inconsistency, but that doesn’t mean we can’t improve. Utilizing a private tutor is a great way to build and sustain positive working habits. TutorNerds knows your frustrations – we’ve been through it too – and would be more than happy to share with you the strategies we’ve found successful over our years of educating.
Consistency is key, Los Angeles!