Preparing to study

It’s that time again…time to shake off the ‘lazy-hazy-summer-vacation’ cobwebs and get to work!  Even though I’ve called this post “preparing to study”, the reality is that pretty much the same steps should be followed whether your child is sitting down to study, do their homework, or work on a project or paper.  In truth, the ‘good study habits’ (defined by as “the behaviors used when preparing for tests or learning academic material”) they form now, will benefit them the rest of their lives, whether they are studying for their SAT’s or preparing a presentation for work.

Most kids will try to convince you that they work best when the TV is on or when the music is blaring, but very few people can truly concentrate with that level of noise and distraction.  What they need to do is to create an environment that promotes focus and learning.  Having said that, there may be some minor differences in what works for one person versus another, but some general rules apply.

Check out this great article for a list of questions your child should ask themselves when preparing to study, if they want to make sure to maximize their productivity.


Click here to read the full article.

Once your kids have taken the necessary steps to prepare themselves and their work area for studying, the next step is to learn how to study effectively.  If you’re interested in learning how to teach your children some effective study strategies, read my post entitled, “How to study effectively“.  You may also wish to check out my posts on “Memory Techniques” and “Mnemonic Study Strategies” for information on these critical student skills.


Memory Techniques

Let’s face it, we could all use a few memory techniques (I’m embarrassed to admit how many times I’ve stood in a room and tried desperately to recall why I’m there)!

Many kids assume that, if they just read over their notes enough times, they will memorize the content and be able to regurgitate it for the test.  Unfortunately, this is not really the case.  Although memory does require some repetition, there are much more effective study techniques than simple rote memorization.  To really transfer the information from short to long-term memory, so that it can be retrieved when needed, a number of different methods can be used with much greater success.

The below memory tips and techniques are being provided to the medical and dental faculties at the University of Manitoba, but are applicable to anyone who wants to train their brain to remember things more effectively.

Click here for the complete article.

Regardless of the age of your children, there are at least a few memory techniques that they could be using to study more effectively.  Start off with a couple of the more enjoyable ones first (e.g. creating silly songs and mnemonics), then go from there!

If you’re interested in teaching your children good study habits, you may also wish to read my post entitled How to study effectively.