For secondary school students time management skills are essential for them to be able to balance a great social life, family time and academic success all at once. However, for many students’ secondary school can be overwhelming due to an increased workload and busier schedule, which can lead to teens feeling rushed, unprepared for class and stressed out. Developing time management skills couldn’t be simpler and getting started sooner rather than later will not only help improve their performance, but will mean they’re able to manage a busy homework schedule and stay on top of a thriving social life. Even better, these skills will stay with them way beyond secondary school and will be handy in college, university and everyday life. Here’s some great tips on how to help your teens develop great time management skills today.
Schedule time with a weekly planner
Mapping out a weekly schedule using a planner or calendar is a great way to improve time management skills. This technique means students will be able to see the upcoming week and map out their time accordingly without feeling overwhelmed. We recommend adding in exams, homework deadlines, extra-curricular activities and family commitments so your teen knows when they have free time to study or go out and see their friends. It’s also a great idea for them to block these events out in their weekly plan once they’ve allocated a certain time for them. Using a visual schedule also gives students the ability to make informed decisions when it comes to what they do in their free time. For example, if there’s a big test the following week they need to study for, they’ll be able to see the time blocked out and realise it’s a priority over hanging out with friends.
Make the most of spare time
It’s important for students to recognise when they can make the most of their spare time to complete tasks. For example, if your teen commutes to school, it could be a productive use of their time to fit in some extra studying or read over some lesson notes. It’s also been found that studying in different places means the brain starts to form associations with course material which makes for improved memory.
Prep for school the night before
Often teens rush out the door in the mornings without eating breakfast and sometimes without the right books or equipment needed for the day. Getting them to prepare for school the night before is a fantastic way to develop time management skills and will make a huge difference to their stress levels. Simply spending 15 minutes each night checking what lessons they have, putting the right books in their bag and laying out clean school uniform, will mean they’re fully prepared for the next day. Students will also find they have extra time in the mornings to relax, which should set them up in a great frame of mind for the rest of the day.
Break big tasks into smaller ones
Breaking big tasks into smaller ones is a great tip when it comes to developing time management skills. Often when students have a huge task to complete, they will put it off as they’re not sure where to start which can be a counter-productive use of time. Instead get your teen to write the big task at the top of a piece of paper and write all the smaller components underneath. This will create a list of easier to achieve, less-intimidating tasks they can tackle easily and add into their weekly schedule.
It’s easy for students to fall into the trap of multi-tasking as it’s believed to be a great use of time, however it’s not always as productive as they may think. Even though it seems they can get more accomplished, it’s usually not the most efficient route. In fact, doing multiple tasks at once may affect the quality of your teens work or mean they lack concentration. Instead, encourage them to focus on one thing at a time so they can put all of their efforts into doing the absolute best with the task in hand.