At this time every year many parents, and a few students, ask me what sort of planner, diary or App they should use. It is great that parents are keen to assist their children with organisation and time management at the start of the school year. I encourage you to keep reading to find out why students should use something to manage their time.
Some children will be keen to use something to manage themselves however many more these days actually don’t see the need or point. Many students don’t think they need anything to help them with managing their workload and activities. For many, this unfortunately can lead to poor organisation, time management and in turn lower academic results. Time and time again I see students become anxious and overwhelmed as the year progresses and their workload increases and see that they are trying to manage without using any form of planner or online tool to assist.
With the increase in technology many school provide tasks and deadlines on school portals. This is great for students to know what they have and when it is due. However this does not help them to actually manage their time and that is why planners, diaries or Apps still have a very important role to play. Many of the schools I work with and talk to, are continually grappling with how to solve this issue and go from having compulsory diaries to not having them for a year or so only to often reintroduce them again the following year.
In the transition workshops I conduct for Year 6 students I speak about the importance of using a diary and teach them the basics of how to use it. From this stage on it is important they get used to using something to manage their time so that by the time they enter the senior years this becomes a daily habit.
As you will hear me regularly say to students I really don’t care what they use but that they use something! My advice to students is to have a go at using a few different tools so they can work out which one will work for them best in managing their time. This can be a simple notebook, a diary, a planner, a wall calendar, whiteboard, an electronic diary like google calendar, or one of the many Apps available such as My Homework.
To manage ones time, students actually need to ‘see time’ or in other words make time visual. Usually for a planner or diary it is important to have a week to a page so students can see ahead of time. There is nothing worse than using a day to a page diary and flipping the page only to see something is due the next day that they haven’t even started. As many parents would know students often live in the ‘now’ and not the ‘not now’ so the more they can see ahead of time the better. By having a plan, students are also more likely to do the necessary work and on time!
There are currently very few wall planners for students hence why I recently launched my own reusable whiteboard planner. The feedback from students has been very positive to date and they are finding it really helps them to see more than a week at a time as it includes both a term and weekly planner.
If you have any further questions about what your child should use or how to get them to use it then please get in touch.