We are just over a month into second semester, and I’m guessing you recently went to parent-teacher conferences. Maybe it went well? Maybe…not so much. What is a major impediment to students getting better grades? Ok, yes, actually doing the work. But a close second: getting organized! Getting it together doesn’t have to be confusing. Here are 3 simple ways you can easily get your teen organized.
student and parent at computer

Create electronic file folders. I dare you to look at your teen’s desktop. If your child is struggling with organization, I’ll bet there are files all over with no semblance of order. Start by identifying and creating electronic folders. This might mean a folder for each class, and subfolders within focused on the unit of study. Or, start with folder names like, “notes,” “homework,” “projects.”

Focus on a paper planner over electronic. I know what you’re thinking: it’s 2019 and everything goes online. As an adult, you have learned over time how to manage multiple calendars. But a disorganized teen? They’re still learning. And imagine their schedules: nightly homework for 8 different classes, long-term projects for a few of those classes, several activities, and family events. Your teen’s teachers may put assignments online, but I’ve talked to teens who spend half their homework time just trying to log in, have Wi-Fi issues, and get distracted by YouTube. If you’re starting from square one in an effort to get organized, just start with paper.

Prioritize. The mound of homework may be overwhelming your child each night. Sit down and prioritize the work. Urgent and more difficult tasks should happen sooner. Then, use the Pomodoro method to get it done!

These may all seem like simple steps, and they are! Spending a little time with your teen getting them set up, and then checking in regularly (think every day at the beginning, then once a week after you see them get a few “wins”) will get them on the right track. Because let’s be honest: half the battle of getting good grades is just being organized.

Want more ideas? Check out Social Media Wellness by Ana Homayoun.