The little school boy is busy with his assignments. No need for his mama to help him research. Good thing at an early age, this momi was able to train her boys to study on their own.
With three boys all attending school and this mother busy with her one-year-old boy, time management at the small house would certainly be an issue. And so, to make life easier for everyone, I’ve encouraged the boys to be independent on their studies and follow a certain study habit. Their mother is still available though for guidance but not to feed them answers to their homework.
Some important “study time” rules we follow at the small house:
1. Regular study time.
This mother encourages her boys to do their homework the same day their teachers gave them the assignments. The boys usually arrive at 4pm. They have at least 30 minutes to change clothes and eat merienda (usually rice). After that, they need to be at their designated places to start with their assignments.
After their homework would be a quick review about the day’s lessons. I also encourage them to study in advance in preparation for tomorrow’s new lessons.
2. Specific study time area.
We have our living room as the designated study area. Each has his own table to use for research and writing. And in doing their assignments, we have the one-at-a-time rule wherein they have to finish their Reading assignment first, for instance, before putting on the table their Mathematics notebook. This, I believe, would help them concentrate more on the subject, without thinking and seeing that there are still undone homework. Also, there would be less clutter on the table.
3. Study time means peace and order time.
There will be no television, radio or cellphone while studying. Pocketbooks and toys or anything that would distract them from studying are all off-limits at the living room. If they have finished their homework and reviews before dinner, then they can watch a few television shows.
4. Understand what you have written or just read.
If doing research, the boys are encouraged to use the encyclopedia or dictionary. They can also use the laptop for further research. It is a must though that they do not copy the entire paragraph but to paraphrase them. Plagiarism isn’t encouraged at the small house. That way, too, we would be certain that if they can paraphrase the article, they have understood it. This system also helps the boys improve their writing composition.
In reviewing for an exam, the boys are encouraged to make their own flashcards. These flashcards are very handy and they could bring them to school for quick review while waiting for their subject teacher. Also, I let them read the chapter then ask them to explain or summarize it in their own words.
5. Check on them, too.
While the boys are reviewing for an exam or doing their assignments, I make sure to sit in the same room with them. This gives them reinforcement. Also, it tells them that I am always available for any questions or help.
After doing their assignments, the boys need to show to their mother their work. This way, I would be able to check on grammar, misspelled words, and even their handwriting.
Also, one by one, we check each subject and ask the boys what they did in the classroom. If they just had their Math test, I always casually ask them “How did the Math test go?”
If by chance any of my boys relayed to me that they have difficulty understanding a certain subject, I write to their teachers and ask help to kindly explain further the subject. Sometimes though, if my husband or I could do it ourselves, we do not bother the teacher for help. I also have the habit of rechecking seatworks and exam papers. If I saw corrections, I write to the subject teacher. This way, all necessary corrections will be addressed and corrected properly.
6. Have a dialogue with the classroom adviser
Good thing that the boys’ school has arranged a dialogue session with the classroom adviser during the releasing of report cards. That way, parents are aware of their children’s academic and character standing in school. This mother always looks forward to such opportunity. I also relay to my son what his teacher had just told me so he would be aware as well.
7. Weekends are free time!
Fridays and Saturdays are my boys’ “me time.” They could play PS2 or check on their tablets. They can also watch their favorite television shows until 10 pm. If we have extra money for movie dates or Timezone, we go out on a Saturday.
These are just a few of the study habits we implement at the small house. So far, they work for us. If you could share yours, we would gladly welcome your comments, please.