6 Important Rules For Finding Your Homework Groove
1. Take Envy-Worthy Class Notes. The first step in making homework easier actually begins in class with good note taking. In order to take the kind of class notes that other classmates will ask to borrow, students have to be actively paying attention in class—texting, daydreaming, or crushing on the cutie two rows over might be fun, but certainly doesn’t work in students’ favour when it’s homework time.
2. Use Your Agenda. Schools don’t pass out agendas so that students have a place to doodle—an agenda is actually a very important tool that helps students stay organized. But, it can be used for more than just copying down daily homework assignments: it can help students prioritize their workflow, organize their time, keep track of questions to ask the teacher, and much, much more.
3. Know What Works for You. There’s a lot of differing advice about how to proceed with homework. Start with the hardest subject. Start with their easiest subject. But there is only one piece of advice that students really need: do whatever works for you. Getting the homework done is the name of the game, so whether students like to get math out of the way first, or whether they always read for English while sitting on the couch, the important thing is that they develop a routine that helps them easily get into the homework groove.
4. It’s Homework Time. If there’s one thing that we know about the brain, it’s that it can be easily trained. It’s wired to develop habits and to recognize schedules, like when it’s time to eat, and when it’s time get up. The brain can also be readily programmed to recognize when it’s homework time. In order to do this, students need to work on homework at approximately the same time every day. By being consistent about when they crack open the books, students will find themselves getting into the homework groove regularly and effortlessly.
5. Homework Habitat. The idea of having a set place to do homework and to study is not new. What is new, however, is research that says that different study locations can help students actually experience better recall. If getting up and moving around, or exploring different locations to crack open the books helps students beat the study blahs and improve recall, they should go for it! (See tip three: Know What Works For You) However, having a place where students can dump their bookbags and keep their school supplies is still a great idea—it helps them get organized, eliminates time-wasting activities such as searching for that calculator or pencil sharpener, and goes a long way to helping establish a groovy homework routine.
6. Remove Distractions. TVs. Cellphones. iPods, Computers: when it comes to homework procrastination, these are all tried-and-true tools of the trade. A student sits down to do homework and on the second question needs to Google something. Suddenly it’s an hour later and question three hasn’t been started. It’s a scenario that all students—young and old alike—are more than familiar with. If getting the homework done quickly and correctly is the name of the game, then removing distractions is key. Turn the TV off. Take the earbuds out. Step away from the laptop. If certain questions require online support, save them until the rest of the homework has been completed.
That being said, if students work better with a little background noise, then put the radio on at a low volume, (see Tip 3) and be sure that any rockin’ out isn’t distracting from the task at hand.