Developing good organizational skills is a key ingredient for success in school and in life. Although some people are by nature more organized than others, anyone can put routines and systems in place to help a child “get it together.”
Here are some ways to help both parents and kids get organized for school ..
1. Use Checklists
Help your child get into the habit of keeping a “to-do” list. Use checklists to post assignments, household chores and reminders about what materials to bring to class. Your child should keep a small pad or notebook dedicated to listing homework assignments. Crossing completed items off the list will give him a sense of accomplishment.
You can even use apps like Google Keep, where you can create shared checklists. While you don’t want to hover over every assignment, you can use it to keep track of which assignments your kid is crossing out right away and which are taking a bit longer to finish. They may need help in a subject or they may need to organize their assignments, which leads us to our next tip…
2. Organize Homework Assignments
Before beginning a homework session, encourage your child to number assignments in the order in which they should be done. They should start with the one that’s not too long or difficult, but avoid saving the longest or hardest assignments for last. The last thing you want is a kid working through a history essay at 10 o’clock at night.
If your child has a bigger assignment that isn’t due right away, show them how to organize it into smaller chunks that they can work into their usual homework session.
3.Set a Designated Study Time
Your child should know that a certain time every day is reserved for studying and doing homework. The best time is usually not right after school — most children benefit from time to unwind first. Include your child in deciding a time. Even if they don’t have homework, the reserved time should be used to review the day’s lessons, read for pleasure or work on an upcoming project.
4. Provide Support While Your Child Is Learning to Become More Organized
Help your child develop organizational skills by photocopying checklists and schedules and taping them to the refrigerator. Gently remind them about filling in calendar dates and keeping papers and materials organized.
Most important, set a good example. Use that big calendar yourself. Layout your own clothes for the next day. And keep to-do lists of your own.
5. Prepare for the Day Ahead
Before your child goes to bed, they should pack away their schoolwork and books. The next day’s clothes should be laid out with shoes and accessories. Devices should be plugged in to charge. This will cut down on morning confusion and allow your child to prepare quickly for the day ahead.