Did you know most middle school students do not know how to study? Study skills have to be learned!
Simply looking at their notes is not enough (which is what many middle schoolers believe studying is). To study, students need to practice what they learn. This obviously would look different depending on the class. Studying should include reading, writing, speaking and listening.
Here are a few tips to help your child learn how to study:
1. Know what your child is learning – It’s hard to help when you do not know what your child is learning. You can look at what teacher posts online (if they have a website), refer to study guides the teacher provides, look through your child’s notes, or, simply (and probably the best option), have a conversation with your child about what they are learning in school.
2. Stay organized – Explain and show your child the importance of having an agenda and staying organized. Make it the expectation for YOU that they write their homework in their agenda every single day. This way you know what’s coming up and can help your child avoid procrastination for upcoming tests and projects.
3. Set a timer – depending on how much homework a child has (we don’t want a child to work more than 90 minutes on all homework combined), set a timer for 15-30 minutes of studying each day. This is if your child has less than 90 minutes of homework to do.
4. Keep distractions away – cell phones should be put away during homework and study time. C
5. Here is where the reading, writing, speaking, and listening comes into play. These are a few examples of how your child can study:
Read their notes ALOUD (reading and listening),
Rewrite notes(writing) while saying what they are writing ALOUD (speaking and listening),
Do math problems from class again while saying them ALOUD as they are writing them (writing, speaking, listening),
teaching YOU how to do a math or science problem (speaking),
explaining to YOU what a vocabulary term means (speaking),
explaining to YOU what happened in a historical event (more speaking)
Your child should start always start with reading, writing, and using their notes as support, then work on being able to talk about and explain the content. The end goal with studying is that your child should be able to talk about the content without looking at their notes. If they can talk about what they have learned at the dinner table that night, then they have learned it!