How to Stay Ahead This Year

Returning to school is a yearly milestone full of anticipation and dread. Resolutions abound that include strict study schedules, color coded organization systems, and promises to avoid procrastination.  As the shine of the new year fades, students and parents often find themselves reverting to old habits and losing focus.  We often get questions on how to maintain momentum so we are sharing our top tips.

Start early! We often hear students say they don’t have any work the first week of school.  While that may feel true compared to the chaos of mid-terms, there is work that can be done.  Don’t confuse lack of deadlines with lack of work.  Start the reading, writing, or math assignment that is due next week.

Pick your space and time You are building habits. Having a specific time and place for your homework will cue your brain that it’s time to work. Find a place without distraction. Leave your phone in a different room and bring only what you need for your homework.

Write it down And then look at it. Students who have a consistent method of organization for assignments, commitments, and deadlines are more successful. This is a life skill that will directly transfer to every post-high school path you can take. It can be an agenda, organizer, or Google calendar. Find one that works for you and use it every day.

Celebrate small and large success There will always be another test, another meet, another week of homework assignments.  Find time to recognize and celebrate forward momentum and milestones as a family.  A little bit of fun is one of the best ways to combat stress.

It is inevitable that the school year will become stressful and chaotic at some point.  Building these habits won’t prevent being overwhelmed but it can lessen the impact. Being proactive over the next couple of weeks is worth the investment.

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