There are so many distractions around that it is often very difficult for children to focus in their homework and studying. Television, video games, and mobile phones tend to be the most common cause of distraction while studying. But these are not the only ones. Truth is that no matter how enthusiastic or dedicated children are about their studies, we live in a world that is designed to divert their attention elsewhere.
So, then, what can we do to help them stay focused and achieve their study goals?
Let's look at the following ideas!
1. Clear boundaries between study and play
One of the main reasons children find it so difficult to concentrate is that there is very little difference between their study space and play time. Most children often do their homework on the couch, in bed or in front of the TV. In these conditions it's only natural that they cannot switch into the serious, focused mindset for studying.
To help our children focus, it is important to prepare a dedicated study area that they use only for studying. This will help them keep clear boundaries between their play time and their study time. Also, it will make their play time more enjoyable as it won't be disturbed with pending homework or other responsibilities.
2. Make their free time count
Studying is indeed a very important part of a child's life, but playing and relaxing during their free time is just as important. A child that is stressed, tired and unmotivated will not be able to focus at all, especially during long study sessions.
Having a fun free time will help release all the stress from school and find joy and motivation. The best students are those who work hard for a period of time and them have a chance to fully enjoy their free time. Allowing our children the proper amount of play and relaxation time will show its benefits in the long run.
3. Focus on short term goals
It is much easy to focus on short, attainable goals, than on the long-term ones. For example, if a child has four weeks to prepare for an exam, it is likely that they will be overwhelmed by the enormity of the task and find ways of distracting themselves until the last minute. Helping children find clear, achievable goals for each study session will help them get much more done. It will also boost their motivation, as they will be able to see how much they have accomplished in a certain period of time.
The more specific these short-term goals are, the more likely they will get done! And the easier for our children to focus on achieving them!
4. See to their basic needs first
It is a simple truth that no one can study on an empty stomach, thirsty, or sleepy. One important point when ensuring that children are able to focus effectively on their study is to make sure that they are well hydrated, well fed and have had a good night's sleep the night before. Without these vital ingredients, children's brain will never be able to work at full capacity.
5. Set a positive example
Children are constantly copying adults, especially those they are closer to. As their parents, guardians and teachers we become the most important influences on their life. One of the best things we can do the help our children focus on their studies is demonstrate the ways in which we also focus on a similar task. For example, when I was young, my Mum would sit down at the dining room table with me while I did my homework and sort out all the , paperwork and work she had to deal with that week. This set a positive example for me, and it made me feel like we were both working together to achieve our goals. And once we were both done, we could both relax and enjoy the rest of the night together.