Developing Effective Student Study Habits

Developing Effective Student Study Habits

The study habits that children develop at an early age will influence how they learn throughout their school years. Elementary school teachers and parents play an important role in helping children establish the best approaches to learning. This means avoiding the myths surrounding learning behaviors and focusing on study habits that work best.

It is a myth that study skills cannot be learned. Picking up even a few good study habits can make a significant difference on future exams. Students should be encouraged to continue to learn how to learn.

Learning styles are individualized. For example, it is not necessarily true that a student should not study more than one subject at a time. Some students retain more information by moving between subjects while processing the content. Others may need to concentrate solely on one subject for an extended period of time. It is often a case of trial and error to find what works best.

Successful students have learned how to study smarter, not harder. Effective approaches to share with students include:

  • Choose specific times to study; a routine helps mental preparation to study
  • Set specific goals for each study period; this helps stay focused, so it is easy to evaluate progress
  • Stick to the plan; delaying a study session because of a difficult assignment is only procrastinating and can mean sloppy and rushed work later
  • Tackle the difficult assignments first, when mental energies are highest
  • Review class notes before beginning an assignment to be sure all instructions are understood
  • Ask for help when it is needed; sometimes a task related call to a classmate is all that is needed
  • Take short breaks during studying to refresh energy
  • Plan on reviewing what has been covered in class to identify what subject matter is most important • Maintain a positive attitude even if a subject seems difficult; shift priorities and spend a little more time in these areas
 As students develop effective study habits, their ability to assimilate and learn new information will improve. Grades will increase. More importantly, learning becomes an enjoyable experience.