The reason that a student doesn’t reach their academic potential, and doesn’t get the grades they’re capable of, is hardly ever because they didn’t have the ability to do so.
One of the main reasons students don’t get the grades they’re capable of getting is because they were disorganised during the school year.
Sometimes it’s the really little things that make students disorganised – books not in order, losing bits of paper, forgetting to hand in a piece of homework…
Does this all sound too familiar??
Today I want to try and help you help your teen get their school life in order.
This will be an enormous help to your teen in staying on top of things so they can focus on what really matters – getting good grades.
How to organise school stuff with home stuff
By the looks of the emails from students that come my way (and from personal experience), one of the most difficult things about being organised is having some sort of system that keeps your school work organised yet integrated with your work from home.
Things can get messy.
You have one book for your school subjects, but then your teacher also gives you handouts and assignments that you need to look after as well. On top of that you work on the same subject at home – homework, assignments, etc. And on top of THAT, your teen might use a computer at home (or at school) sometimes, which adds another layer of work to the pile.
How the heck are you supposed to integrate all of this stuff so that you know exactly where everything is and can access it quickly and easily?
I’ve got three simple rules for your teen to follow that will keep all of their school stuff organised. No stress.
1. Get two exercise books per subject.
One book is for your teen to use at school. They can write notes in it, complete tasks in class in it – whatever is required.
The other is a homework book. There are two reasons for keeping the two books separate.
School notes and homework and very different things, and therefore deserve to have an exercise book all to their own. It just makes sense this way.
The second reason is that your teen will probably often need the school book to complete homework, and it’s REALLY annoying having to flick back and forth through the book you’re trying to write in.
Having two separate books mean your teen can flick through their school book to find the information they need as they complete their homework.
2. Keep a clear file folder for loose bits of paper
Loose bits of paper can become the bane of a student’s existence. They fall out books, out of bags, and out of our lives.
There’s nothing worse than frantically searching for a piece of paper you need that you know you had a week ago but haven’t seen since. Hideously frustrating.
The solution is simple. As soon as your teen comes home from school they need to file any loose bits of paper they’ve been given that day – handouts, assignments – into a clear file folder. Having one folder per subject is probably a good idea so things are even easier to find.
3. Make use of digital folders
There is nothing that frightens me more than seeing hundreds of documents scattered randomly on someone’s computer desktop.
I feel that given the increasing use of computers in schools, I need to make this point about keeping your computer just as tidy as your books.
Again, the solution is simple.
Make sure your teen has a folder for each subject on their computer.
They might even like to put these folders inside one called ‘School’. Within each subject folder, they should have other folders. These might be ‘Assignments’, ‘Homework’, ‘Research’, ‘Important Dates’, ‘Miscellaneous’.
You get the idea.
This might sound stupidly simple, but I know a lot of students aren’t in the habit of utilising basic systems such as the ones I’ve described.
Help your teen save tonnes of time and oodles of stress by following these three basic rules.
They might need your help to get in the habit of using these systems on a daily basis. Getting in the habit of using them will be the key.
When the time comes to start preparing for exams everything will already be in order, and your teen can focus on the most important thing – studying.
Image Credit: Phillie Casablanca on Flickr