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5 Habits That Can Ruin a School Year


Young boy in class with good habits

1. Oversleeping/Not Getting Enough Sleep. Students of all ages need a bedtime. Research has shown us time and again that during sleep, the brain files and stores information learned throughout the day. Just as oversleeping can wreak havoc on a morning routine, not getting enough sleep can seriously disrupt a student’s ability to focus in class.

2. Poor Nutrition. Food is fuel—the better the quality, the better the performance. If children eat a sugar-filled breakfast, or skip breakfast altogether, they run the risk of performing less than optimally in school. Without proper nutrition, children can tire out and lose focus. Students should be focusing on their teacher, not on their rumbling bellies.

3. Too Much Screen Time. TVs, computers, and cell phones are distracting to students. Mounting evidence is showing that multitasking is not as good as was originally thought. When students are trying to do homework, having online access doesn’t necessarily improve their ability to work, and it can detract from their ability to focus on a single task for a period of time.

4. Procrastinating. Everybody likes to relax after school (or work). But from social lives to family responsibilities to sports and extra curricular activities, it can be tempting to leave homework until the last minute. Too many distractions, not following a schedule, or not using an agenda can put homework on the bottom of the priority list. When students put schoolwork on a backburner, it can lead to last-minute scrambles and late-night cram sessions, neither of which pay-off in the classroom.

5. Not Getting Help. One of the biggest mistakes that students make is waiting until the last minute to seek help. Often the first report card is the first indicator that something may be getting off-track, but it can take a call from the teacher or a failing grade before students seek out support. At that point it will take more effort to correct the problem than if a student had asked for help at the “I’m-not-really-understanding-this stage.”

Oxford Learning has great programs to help students get rid of bad habits and get on track for a better school year. Contact an Oxford Learning location near you to find out how your child can ditch bad school habits for good.

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