A Fresh Start Getting Organized

The New Year is a fantastic time for a fresh start. A fresh start involves eliminating clutter. As a mom, piles are my Achilles heel. One must deal with piles of bills, piles of books, piles of magazines, piles of school work, piles of uncompleted projects, piles of tools from completed jobs! With all our technology, it is amazing at how much stuff surrounds us, engulfs us, and how one’s success is tied to stuff. Most moms report that they must spend an entire day just picking up piles before they can even start cleaning their house. Cleaning up piles is not easy, it is exhausting, but it needs to be done to keep one’s house and life organized. Students’ lives are compacted into a desk, a locker or a backpack and most of them are full of piles. Piles of graded papers, worksheets, notes and assignments that one did not turned in. Students therefore need a fresh start and a time to get organized. Here are four organizational tips for students to have a fresh start in the New Year.

  1. Use a daily planner: Buying a daily planner and not using it doesn’t make one organized. If that was the case, this mom would be the most organized mom around.  A daily planner, to be affective, must be used. Planners come in many different formats and styles including smartphone and paper formats. The key to a daily planner success is to purchase a version your student will use and be comfortable with. Students need to be held accountable, to ensure that the planner is being used. Also, it is recommended that one take one weekend night to help your child plan for the coming week. Keep up this routine for at least 30 days to instill this habit. The result will be a student that is well-organized and has taken command of their academic life.
  2. Take care of piles: My mom kept everything but the kitchen sink in her purse. If you needed something, she more than likely had it in her purse. To find anything though she would dump the whole purse out and go through each item to find what was needed. This worked for Mom, but it doesn’t work for most students. Looking at a student’s backpack, one would swear they are carrying the kitchen sink in them. The key to a student’s success is keeping one’s work spaces organized. Start the New Year off right by encouraging your child to regularly clean out their locker and book bag. Keep them from becoming overwhelmed throughout the year with piles.
  3. Prepare for tests in advance: Most moms have crammed for a test or two in their lives. To avoid late-night cram sessions (which typically keeps mom up late too) have your student, make a resolution to create a study schedule. This study schedule should set time aside far in advance to study for tests. Studying should start the first day of school, not the day before the test.
  4. Go over study notes regularly: Have your children make a resolution to complete all their assignments on time and to take good classroom notes. Ideally, students should review notes or school materials for about fifteen minutes each night, even if they don’t have homework assigned on that subject.

A resolution for the second half of the school year can be anything, big or small. Make sure it is realistic. Help your children focus on two or three attainable resolutions, not the entire list above.

What academic resolutions will you and your children make this New Year?

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