A r c h i v e d  I n f o r m a t i o n

Helping Your Students With Homework: A Guide for Teachers - February 1998

Tips for Getting Homework Done

13. Encourage and teach good study habits

Children need good study skills in order to complete assignments successfully and gain the most from them academically. Unfortunately, many students haven't developed these skills, even by high school.

Some school districts provide comprehensive programs that spell out what study skills students in kindergarten through 12th-grade are expected to learn each year. This can help to assure that important skills are introduced early and nurtured throughout a student's years in school.

Kindergarten or first grade is not too early to introduce students to bringing work home, completing it, and returning it to school. Early assignments need to be simple. For example, very young students might be asked to bring a book for an adult to read to them -- or for the child to read to an adult if he or she can do so. The adult might be asked to initial a bookmark indicating that the book as been read. These early assignments help students grasp the importance of learning at home and show adults that their support for homework is critical.

Older elementary school students are ready to learn more advanced study skills. These include:

Students need to review these study skills in middle school and in junior high as their schedules become more complicated.

Many students need to sharpen their study skills still further as they move into high school and find more demands being placed on their time. Many have trouble pacing themselves as they take on more extracurricular activities and accept part-time jobs.

Students often imitate the organizing habits of important adults in their lives. Therefore teachers can set an example by being organized themselves. They can let students know that they, too, keep calendars to avoid forgetting things. And they can comment to students as they write down on their own calendar, "April 11 -- bring sombrero to school for Spanish class."
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[12. Assign an appropriate amount] [Table of Contents] [14. Provide constructive feedback]