Study Skills


For each subject, whether your child has been given homework or not, make sure he reviews his notes. This will mean that when a big test or an end of unit test comes up, he will be prepared to study for it. This will also help him be ready for the next lesson, and ready to ask any questions on information he does not understand.

Neat and clear notes

Make sure your child’s notes are complete. Have her highlight or underline the most important points. Messy notes should be rewritten or typed.

Keep your schoolbag neat

At least once a week have your child empty his schoolbag so it can be neat and organized. You will be amazed by what he might find! Often, some “lost” notes or homework will show up just in time. For this reason, it is best to have your child do this in the middle of the week, Wednesday night is best. After a little while, your child will become naturally neater.

Use your time efficiently

If your child gets stuck on a particular piece of homework, have her leave it and move on to the next piece. Otherwise, her frustration will rise and make matters worse. Have her go back to the piece she left after a while. Things might be clearer then.

Always look ahead

Your child should use his school planner or his own schedule to anticipate what he will need to be doing soon. Encourage him to do a little bit extra, even when he seems to be finished with the homework for that day. If a test is coming up, make sure your child doesn’t leave studying to the last minute.

Do research wisely

If research is involved in a project, be careful about how your child uses the Internet. The Internet is a valuable resource, but it can be very distracting. Your child may get sidetracked and waste time going from topic to topic. Every now and then, take your child to the library to do research. She will find valuable information and learn many useful research skills.

Use technology

Help your child learn to use a computer effectively to apply to his schoolwork. Let him experiment with PowerPoint, Publisher, Front Page, and other programs. Help your child learn to type efficiently and use Word correctly. Install appropriate audio books on his iPod and watch the Discovery Channel and other educational television programs with him.

Experiment with different study approaches

This is going to be trial and error at the beginning, but for any subject and homework assignment, your child will have to find what works best for her If positive results are not occurring, there is something she may not be doing right. Some children may have to rewrite their notes to remember facts, others might have to read them aloud, while still others might need to act them out or build something. Once the right way is found, learning will improve.

Prioritize what must be done

Your child must learn to prioritize the things he need to do. Schoolwork and extracurricular activities must come first. Make this very clear to your child and help him stick to this priority.

Communicate with teachers

This applies to you as parents as well as to your child. If there is any doubt about an assignment, contact the teacher. Encourage your child to ask the teacher if she is unclear about something. Your child can do this after class or the next day. Doing this will also help your child to develop important communication skills and build her self-confidence.