Encourage children to study at the the same time and place each day.
- Teach children to control their study environment. They need good lighting and a desk or table and chair. Minimize noise and distractions, especially for children with attention deficits.- Help them be organized, such as using desk organizers and planners. Use bulletin boards to pin up school schedules. Help children calendar or schedule their assignments and projects.
- Make resources available, such as dictionaries and encyclopedias.
- Ensure that children have access to the public library. Make time to go to the library as a family.
- Encourage children to use study techniques or formulas, such as "SQ4R" (study, question, read, write, recite and review).
- Teach them to focus on their studies for a period of time, such as about an hour, then take a break.
- Seek the help of members as tutors. The young women in our ward have tutored the younger children for Laurel projects.
- Be involved as parents and families with children's school projects and activities.
- Make time to work with teachers and resource specialists.
- Have regular reading time at night as a family.
- Study the scriptures as a family. This increases the reading levels of children. - Roy and Irene Saunderson, London, Ontario
WRITE TO US:
Sept. 10 "How to deal with unruly children in a home or Church setting."
Sept. 17 "How to encourage discussion during family home evening."
Sept. 24 "How to overcome challenges in your marriage relationship."
Oct. 1 "How to help children learn to follow the counsel of Church leaders."
Oct. 15 "How to avoid making fun of others."
Oct. 22 "How to be financially self-reliant as a single parent."
Had any good experiences or practical success in any of the above subjects? Share them with our readers in about 100-150 words. Write the "How-to" editor, Church News, P.O. Box 1257, Salt Lake City, Utah 84110, or send fax to (801) 237-2121. Please include a name and phone number. Contributions may be edited or excerpted and will not be returned. Due to limited space, some contributions may not be used; those used should not be regarded as official Church doctrine or policy. Material must be received at least 12 days before publication date.
HOW WE DID IT:
Make resources available
Our children's reading skills have been blessed as we have read the Book of Mormon as a family. The Spirit enlightens us as we use our intellectual powers in righteous ways. Other ways to help children develop good study habits include:
- Read out loud to children from the time they are babies.
- Make resources accessible. My parents had the first encyclopedias in our small town. Parents should promote a "look-it-up" habit through the use of encyclopedias and the public library.
- Apply "Grandma's law," which states, "Eat your vegetables, then you get dessert." In other words, "Do your homework, then you can play or watch television."
- Limit television viewing. - Debra Nelson Holm, Nampa, Idaho
- Realize that having a consistent time to study is an important key to good study habits. Help your children decide on the best time and place to study. This also applies to scripture study in your family. Having a routine helps to create a sense of security.
- Eliminate distractions during this time. This improves concentration.
- Be a good example. Children reflect the joy in learning that their parents demonstrate. We find that reading to and with our children from the scriptures and many good books is a wonderful way to share that joy and model for them the enjoyment of learning. - Dan and Charlotte Lindstrom, Longview, Wash.
Start when young
- Get proper rest. You can study better when you are well-rested and not tired. Get to bed early. Early morning is a good time to study.
- Start reading to your children when they are young. Get them interested. Show them your concern and that you want to help them learn.
- Play quiz games and puzzles. This teaches them concentration.
- Eat properly. Your mind works better with food in your stomach. - LuDean Crosby, Murray, Utah
Have daily routine
In our family, we encourage the following:
- Don't put off studying until the last minute. Young people will be too tired. Do homework before going out to play.
- Get proper rest.
- Have a daily routine. Do homework the same time every day. Have a designated work place free from distractions.
In our family, we let our children have an extra 30 minutes to read after they go to bed. This encourages their reading habits. In addition, we pray for guidance for them. We teach them to include their schooling and education in their personal prayers. We teach them how important education is. Also, when our children get good grades, we praise them and remind them how they got them. - David and Sandy Trust, Memphis, Tenn.
Make learning fun
- Read to children early so they develop a love for books.
- Show your children school is important to you. Be there for their activities and teacher's conferences.
- Make sure children don't get involved in too many extracurricular activities, which can eat all their time.
- Make learning fun and exciting. Be creative in your family home evening. Take trips together as a family to the public library or take nature walks together.
- Read scriptures together as a family. This will help children develop a love for the scriptures and give them a desire for personal scripture study. Seminary and scripture study should be the No. 1 priority. Studying your scriptures first makes your other studies go easier and you understand and remember things better. - Bert and Pam Vines, Newbury, Vt.
We have found that it's important to help our children with their homework. When we help them, we are not only helping them get better grades, but we are showing them we are supportive of them.
It's important to support our children's teachers through such things as attending parent-teacher conferences. We need to realize there's always two sides of a story. If there's a problem in our child's education, we need to listen to his or her side of the story, and then talk to the teacher - and listen. We, as parents, need to realize that most teachers are doing their best. They are trying to give our children the best education they can. When they don't have the support of the parents, they are up against a wall.
In addition, we, as parents, need to take an interest in what classes our children are taking. And we need to have resources in the home, such as encyclopedias and a computer. It's not only important to have resources, but to have up-to-date resources. - Charles and Rhonda Thomas, Manassa, Colo.
HOW TO CHECKLIST
1 Read scriptures, other books together; start early.
2 Help children learn routine, have quiet place to study.
3 Be involved in their education; help them, praise them.
4 Make resources available in the home; make learning fun.