9 student organising tips to reduce overwhelm

Has your son or daughter just started year 7 and feeling overwhelmed by all the changes around them and the amount of homework?  Or maybe they have started at any year level and are swamped in homework and not sure what to do?  Maybe they feeling like their life is over and they will never have free time again?overwhelmed_panel

Do any of these sound familiar in your house at the moment?

Be assured that these are usual feelings at the start of a school year and one I am seeing regularly when working with individual students on their organisational and time management skills.  It is important for them to develop these skills early enough so that they feel successful academically and personally.

These 9 student organising tips will help you assist them through these current feelings and reduce the overwhelm:

  1. Reassure them they are not alone – these are normal feeling amongst students a this time of year and one that will pass with time, and with effort in putting organisation and planning strategies in place.
  2. Use their student planner like it is their ‘best friend’ – this could be paper or electronic based and they should put all homework in their planner in each class.  Their planner should also include after school activities and other commitments they have.
  3. Assist them to identify free time – It is very important to identify when they have free time in their planner and I am not talking about it being so that they can then use it for homework.  As parents we understand that balance is extremely important and students also need to ensure they have some down time.
  4. Assist them to plan when to do their homework – it usually doesn’t all have to be completed that night and often they have up to a week to do it.  Some students I am working with think they should just stay on top of it and are therefore trying to do it all the night they get it as they know they will get more.  What I find then happens is they feel like they are always doing homework to try and stay ahead when in actual fact they are never having much down time.  If something is not due for a week then assist them to slot in a time to do it in the coming days rather than trying to do it with other homework that is due the next day.
  5. Break big projects into smaller manageable tasks –  For example if the homework has 10 parts to it then maybe do a few of the parts first rather than trying to do all 10 in one go.
  6. Ensure they have a homework space to complete their work – usually this should be quiet, well lit and away from distractions.  However it is important to note children do have different learning styles and some may find it better to work in an environment where there is more noise and a lot going on.
  7. Social Media – we all know that social media is part of a teenagers life these days.  You can assist your child in the way they manage the use of their time on social media.  In particular ensure it is not a distraction to them when they need to be completing their homework.
  8. Don’t bring home all their books every night – Encourage them to leave all their books in their locker at school rather than bringing everything home all the time.  Often their bags are heavy anyway and they should only bring home those they need for homework.
  9. The importance of a daily routine – Ensure they get into a daily routine and in particular are getting enough sleep at night.  It will take some time to adjust to the day-to-day life of secondary school and they will cope much better if they are going to bed early enough and having an adequate night’s sleep.  We all know that having a good night’s rest will make all the difference!

If you would like to know how I could support your child now or in the future with their student organisation and time management skills please click here or contact me amanda@organisingstudents.com.au or by calling on 0409 967 166.