I hear from many parents that their child is stressed out with schoolwork, tests, finals, finding time to study, and extracurricular activities.
I do not like seeing overstressed children and teenagers. Stress takes a dangerous toll on us-we must prevent it early on.
Sit down with your child and do these three things:
1. Pick out a paper or electronic planner for them to record their appointments, assignments, and to-dos. I like using a paper planner in conjunction WITH something electronic to record all phone numbers, addresses and set appointments.
2. Talk about Priorities and map them out. What are your child's priorities? Typical student priorities are academics, family life, after-school activities, friends, relaxing, religion, pets, etc.
Have them rate their priorities according to level of importance. Then track the time they've been spending on things. For example, does the amount of time spent on schoolwork reflect the number 3 that your child gave it?
Draw a schedule with your child. Put the days of the week on top and the time of the day on the left hand side. Draw squares for the chunks of time that are occupied currently. Much of the time will be “school". Include squares for travel to and from school time, wake-up and dress, snack time, and after-school activities.
Once you draw it all out, you can see how much time is left. Having this visual really helps to see when is the best time to sign up for another class or hang out with friends.
3. WADE through the piles of to-dos (Morgenstern)
Write it down-write down the task at hand. A test, a paper due date, a dance rehearsal. Get it in your planner.
Add it Up-Estimate how long it will take. A dance rehearsal that is an hour really can be an hour 1/2 when you include travel time. Overestimate.
Here's an example-A final exam in 12 weeks requring 200 pages of reading. If you read 20 pages a week for 2 hours, you can get it done with 2 days of review time.
Decide when to do the task based on your time map.
Execute- Do it. Reward yourself. Take babysteps and start the project. Work in 30 minute increments. Silence your inner perfectionist!
For further assistance with teen time management, I know of a summer camp that excels in teaching students skills that encourage maturity, responsibility, good study habits, motivation, and time management. I strongly recommend outside help with teaching kids these important life skills, because part of the challenge with kids is getting them to listen to their parents in the first place! You can eliminate that struggle with a fun, extracurricular program such as a summer camp.
Please contact me for more details or go to http://www.best-organizing-products-superstore.com/self-esteem-teen-summer-camp.html.
It is my hope that with these tips and recommended resources for teens time management, you can help de-stress your child and provide them with the skills they need when homework overload hits!
Rebekah Slatkin is a professional organizer dedicated to getting people organized through hands-on decluttering sessions, teleconferencing, coaching, and her website http://www.best-organizing-products-superstore.com
Visit http://www.best-organizing-products-superstore.com and subscribe to Organewz, her ezine dedicated to organized living and get organizing tips and downloads- free.