24 Dec What You Can Do To Help Your Child Manage Their Studies
Singapore’s schools are known for their intense rigour, and with it comes plenty of homework. Take-home worksheets and assignments are a necessary step in learning for practising and reviewing what has been learnt in class.
However, when the homework load builds up along the years, students may find it harder to cope as they progress in school. On top of homework, students still have to deal with after-school activities, social lives, family time, and more. Thus, to many students, homework feels like a huge burden and contributes to a lot of stress.
While students cannot control the amount of homework that schools give, they can make the best of it by learning how to manage the load. For students experiencing the homework crunch for the first time, here’s how parents can step in to help:
Designate a study area
If your home does not already have one, you should designate a study area for your child. The study area sets the tone for concentration and productivity, and should be set up to reflect this. This means minimising distractions, temptations and noise in that area. An ergonomic study desk and chair will also go a long way in helping kids stay comfortable while doing their school work.
Equip the study area adequately
One big time-waster when doing homework is when kids go looking for stationery, books, and resources around the house, distracting from the task they set out to do in the first place. An effective way to cut down on these time-wasters is to properly equip the study area with all the necessary school supplies from the get-go. Apart from stationery and textbooks, some helpful things to have are shelves or filing systems to keep worksheets organised.
Get rid of distractions
It is not enough to set aside a corner and call it the ‘study zone’. Action needs to be taken to remove distractions from the study zone. Thus, it is best to keep temptations like the television, gaming devices and toys out of sight from the study zone. Other family members should also keep the noise level low if they are near to the study area, and not distract the child by talking to them unnecessarily.
Use a planner
With the amount of homework a student gets, it is sometimes hard to keep track of what needs to be done. A good habit to help students learn how to handle the workload is to use a planner. The organiser can be used to record to-do lists along with deadlines of each task, so that the child knows what needs to be completed each day. Topping it all off is that satisfying feeling of cancelling out each task once it is completed!
When there is a lot of homework, it can become difficult to decide where to start. Parents should guide their children in learning how to prioritise work. For example, urgent homework that is due the next day should be completed first. If they have a long-term deadline like a project, teach them to break it into chunks with interim deadlines to keep their progress on track. Students should also learn how to prioritise based on their productivity, such as doing challenging tasks at the time of highest productivity, and tackling simpler tasks when the energy level is low.
At times, your child may find some homework being too challenging for him or her, which causes them to get stuck. When children constantly find themselves being unable to complete the homework due to the difficulty, they can quickly become demoralised. Hence, parents should make help available to their child. If possible, parents or older siblings can provide tutoring to the child. If this is not possible, you can make use of the wide availability of top enrichment centres in Singapore to get extra guidance for your child.