Time Management Skills

Remembering Summer

by Karen Meister

As everyone gets into school mode, the last bits of summer bliss are still fresh in our minds.  The children who attended sleep away camp are still fresh with stories of newly made friends, the excitement of Color War, and exhibit a little bit of the independence they achieved while away at camp.  The high schoolers that went on trips of excitement and expansion have stories, photos and are eager to catch up with their friends from home.

In either case, the shift back to home life and soon to be school life is a struggle for everyone.  The return of the daily routine is around the corner.  Get ready!!

So what can you do to help the entire family shift?

  1. Bedtime.  Since sleep is of utmost importance, you want to make sure your family is getting enough in preparation for the start of school.  But in reality, and I don’t care how strict of a parent you may be, it is tough to go from the looseness of summer to the controlled routine of the school year.  So, you have to gradually get into the swing of things.  Set the bedtime about 15 minutes earlier each night until you are back on “School Standard Time”.  But alas, don’t be hard on yourself or your kids.  Everyone will be tired on Monday morning.
  2. Start making the school schedule spreadsheet.  Every member of the family gets to participate.  The first part is time to arrive at school and time it ends.  And from there, you work backwards as you plug in the “musts” and the “wants”.  Click here to get a copy of a simple school prep calendar.

Managing The Homework Load

As you have probably noticed, the amount of homework for students in all grades and all academic levels has dramatically increased over the last several years.  Due to the pressure of improving test scores and academic gains, teachers and administrators everywhere are loading up the amount of work so that all the required standards are being covered during the course of the year.  Instead of making sure students have a sufficient grasp of concepts, teachers are now flying through their lessons so that they can document that the Florida Sunshine State Standards are being covered daily.  It’s not the greatest time for educators and they are really feeling the strain of over-crowded classrooms, the requirement of documenting everything and unhappy parents. This trickle- down effect has had the greatest impact on students of all ages.

We consistently work with elementary students that are receiving a minimum of two hours of work daily.  From reading logs to science projects, young children everywhere must complete multiple assignments daily.  Even though most parents provide adequate academic support, many parents cannot manage this homework crisis.  Here are some helpful suggestions that will allow you to manage the amount of weekly work your child is receiving:

  • Make sure you have a firm understanding of the portal and how to keep track of grades and upcoming assignments.
  • Be sure to check all classes at the start of the week so you can prioritize what work needs to be done first.
  • Make sure your child makes a time management schedule that encompasses all weekly activities from recreational to normal household chores.  Children must learn at an early age how to budget and manage their time.