Recently, a SOAR® subscriber asked for tips to help her daughter stay on-task with her homework. Just last night, a student in my Homework Action Group complained of the same problem. “I have a hard time staying focused on homework. It takes me forever to do it!”
I also remember, as a young student, sitting at my desk, wriggling and squirming.Soon, I would need a drink, or snack, or pencil… After getting lost in the kitchen and sucked into a TV show, it would be another hour before I returned to my homework.
It would get so late, I finally had no choice but to do my homework. By that time, I was irritable, annoyed, and impatient. (Don’t laugh, Mom!) That made homework even worse.
Why did I do this?
I didn’t like homework. Obviously. I didn’t know how to do it efficiently. I didn’t have the discipline to do it quickly.
But, I’ve learned a lot since then…
There isn’t much I can do to help anyone “like” homework. I can teach strategies for completing it faster, but that takes 150 pages. So, this article will help you improve your self-discipline.
“Self-Discipline Does NOT Sound Fun!”
Yes, I know… self-discipline sounds dreadful. But, it’s time to change your perspective. Just past the point of resistance is an amazing feeling of accomplishment and a big pay-off.
Self-discipline is what motivates athletes to win championships and wealthy people to earn their riches. One of the world’s most successful marketing campaigns was created on the concept of self-discipline; NIKE inspires athletes to “Just Do It!” Apply that attitude to homework, and great things will happen.
Action Plan for Staying Focused on Homework
“Just do it!” is a little easier said than done, especially when it comes to homework. However, the following tips will help you get started:
- The hours between 3-6 p.m. are typically the most wasted of a student’s day. Make them your most productive by doing homework within one hour after school, when possible. You’re most alert at this time, so homework will be easier than doing it later.
- Find small sections of time for homework before you get home… on the bus, before basketball practice, or even during school. (There is a lot of “down-time” in classes, such as when teachers take attendance.) The less homework you have when you get home, the more motivated you will be to finish the rest quickly.
- Reward yourself. Challenge yourself to do all of your homework before a specific time. Then, you’ll have plenty of time to watch Netflix, play video games, text friends, etc.
- Fill a basket with supplies you need for homework: pens, pencils, pencil sharpener, stapler, paper, scissors, markers, glue, ruler, etc. Keep the basket next to you so everything will be right at your fingertips. One trip across the house for a stapler can cost you hours when you get sidetracked by the refrigerator, TV, or computer. Every sibling should have their own basket. If you live in two homes, keep one basket in each house.
- Eliminate distractions. It’s tempting to watch TV, listen to music, and text friends while doing homework. However, the human brain is only capable of focusing on one thing at a time. When you try to do two things at once, your attention constantly shifts back-and-forth. Sometimes that shift happens so rapidly, you don’t even notice it. However, you will be:doubling your homework time, increasing errors, and completely destroying any learning that might happen while doing homework.
- Use an electronic timer. Before you begin an assignment, determine how much time it should take to complete. Add five minutes and set the timer. Challenge yourself to finish before the timer goes off. This is great way to develop motivation (a.k.a. self-discipline) because it becomes a game to play against yourself. For younger students, parents can offer small rewards for each assignment that is done before the timer goes off.
- Parents: Do your “homework” while your child does their homework. You have bills to pay and school papers to complete. Do those chores during “homework time.” It helps them feel like they aren’t “missing out” and keeps them focused.
Homework is usually NOT fun. But, you can make it much easier if you follow Nike’s advice and “Just Do It!” Your evenings will suddenly have more free time.Your grades will improve as you learn information while doing homework.
Before long, you’ll develop a much better attitude towards homework because you will have taken control of it, instead of your homework taking control of you.
To get more simple ways to easily “Just Do It,” check out our dynamic and interactive app for students.
To your success,
Filed Under: StudentsTagged With: homework, students
Olla peeps! Are you tired of not being able to focus on your homework? Is the question,”how to focus on homework” bugging you? Does your mind gets distracted? Is your child suffering from homework issues? Well not to worry, as in this article I have come up with amazing tips on “how to focus on homework.” It will give answers to all your questions.
Not being able to focus on homework has many reasons behind it. Lack of concentration can be one of the primary reasons. I will be covering different ways in which you can build your concentration.
Another reason for not being able to focus on homework is various distractions around you. These distractions let you part from concentrating on your homework. But, there are ways with which you can overcome these issues, and I will help you with it by telling you ideas on how to focus on homework.
This article will deal with following:
- How to focus on homework?
- How can you concentrate on your homework?
- Tips for helping your kids with their homework.
So, let’s get started. 🙂
1) How to focus on homework?
To get an answer to this question that how to focus on homework, you need to first clear your mind regarding things you need to work on. Distribute your work accordingly. If you want to study, then give it a proper time, that this is the time when I need to study or do my homework. Homework needs concentration. We will talk about building concentration too in the next point.
Let’s make it easy for you. I have made it in the form of steps so that you can easily follow them.
i. Plan your assignments
It is very important that you know what you have to do. Make a list of all the assignments which are there. The list will tell you that what all work you need to do. It will clear your mind regarding your assignments. You:
- Make it sure, that whether you have totally understood the assignments given to you or not.
- Ask your teacher about the assignment, if you have any doubt like till when to submit it or how it will be marked?
- Need to think how long will an individual assignment will take and then move forward.
Next, you need to set the assignment priorities. Honestly speaking, I always use to check, which assignment is more important to be done first as it might consume more time. So, I will suggest that this will surely help you. You just need to:
- Check your assignment list.
- Mark down each assignment according to it’s importance.
- Now, keep an eye on how much time you need to spend on your homework for the day.
- Just remember to make an order in which you will complete your assignments.
After prioritizing, now comes the main thing, i.e., planning your time. This is a must step. Most of the students on an average get to do minimum 2 hours of homework. These 2 hours become a burden, and you start to lose interest. The best way is to:
- Give time to your studies between other after-school activities which you have. This will come into your head that this particular time is fixed for studies.
- Keep enough time for each assignment, so plan accordingly.
- Give yourself a short break in between of the assignments say a five to ten-minute break in which you can relax your mind. No one can study continuously for a longer period.
ii. Select a suitable study area
Now, the first thing after you have planned your assignments is to select a suitable area where you can study easily. Choose an area with good lighting as in a darker area; you might have eye pain or even headache. A good lighting will help you concentrate better. You can look for:
- A bright room with a big window, which you can open for light and fresh air. Just remember, open the window only, if it is peaceful outside as the noise from outside will distract you.
- A place where all the necessary items like a pen, pencils, etc. are easily available to you nearby only. This will save your time in searching for things.
- Dim light will make you fall asleep or you may even get distracted.
Selecting a place to study, is your choice. But, I would prefer if you select a room with a table or desk.There are reasons behind it:
- The table or a desk will give you a comfort level. You can keep all your stationary near you on the table. Computer table helps too as it has space to do work on it and with that, you can use the computer too regarding any assignment.
- Use a good back-supporting chair so that your back won’t hurt while sitting for long hours.
- Sitting on a sofa or bed won’t help you to focus on your homework rather, you might end up sleeping on them. So, selecting a right stable place is better for you to focus on your homework.
After you have chosen the right place for you, now comes to the most important thing, i.e., checking for no distractions. It’s a common scenario with all. We all tend to get distracted easily while we sit to study. This is what we need to control the most. Also, get out of the tension of how to focus on homework as for that to happen, I have come up with the following solutions:
- Avoid studying in any room with a T.V.
- Don’t keep a phone nearby, while you sit to study as phones are the biggest distractions these days.
- If it is necessary to keep a phone nearby, then switch off your Internet data and keep your phone far away from you in the room. Then you won’t get distracted, and if someone calls, you will get to know.
- If you want to work on your computer for any assignment, then make sure not to open any other unwanted tabs, as it will only distract you further. Restrict yourself to only informative tabs.
- Avoid such places which are crowded or where you can hear loud voices of family members speaking or t.v. noise.
- Play good music in the background as it will help your mood to get better and it will distract you from other unwanted noises. Play music which won’t make you feel lethargic as then you might sleep. Find a good classical music or any other music which you like but, try to keep it without lyrics as it might distract you too.
No one can study for a longer duration of time and that also constantly. You should:
Take a quick break in between your assignments.Keep some snacks with you so that whenever you feel hungry, you can binge on the snacks. If you starve yourself, then it will become a distraction for you.
Keep your snack healthy and light as if you will eat a heavy snack then, it might make you feel sleepy. Junk food is not at all a good snack option when you are studying. Another important thing is to keep a water bottle and a glass with you, so that you don’t have to go here and there for water, in case you get thirsty.
iii. How to focus on homework and maintain it?
This point will clear out that how to focus on homework without getting distracted and how to maintain that focus. Following are some of the tips:
- Switch off any electronics item around you- These things include your t.v., phone, laptops, etc. which distract you a lot. Switch off your phone and keep it aside. Turn off your computer or laptop until you actually need them.
- Your family and friends should know that you are studying- Tell your family or friends beforehand, that you are going to study. This will make them understand that you need total silence and they will then make sure, to not disturb you.Make sure to tell them the time duration of your studying hours. If you feel that you need help from parents on any subject, then do ask for help rather than just letting it go.
- This point is a must. It’s not at every time of the day when you feel like studying or completing your homework. So, it is important to select those hours of the day when you feel like that yes I can sit and study at this time without having any other works.You need to choose a time on which you will focus the best. Studying after getting tired say suppose, just after returning from school or at late night will not help you. Find out a middle time when you feel fresh and relaxed. In this way, you will not feel sleepy, and you will be able to concentrate much more on your homework.
iv. Finishing your homework
Look at the assignment plan which you have made. Revise the list and then start doing your tasks. Tips:
- Firstly, complete the most difficult assignment. It is because in the beginning your concentration level is on the top and slowly it gets to loosen up.
- When you get tired, start with your lighter assignments which are easy and fun or take lesser time.
- Keep checking your homework list as it will motivate you to keep moving on.
Now, it is very important to note that whenever you get stuck with any subject or any topic, don’t hesitate to ask for help from your parents or any other elder at home. If you do not ask for help, then you might get frustrated, and then is when you will feel to leave your work. To avoid this situation, always move ahead and ask for help when needed. 🙂
The last step is to keep ticking off the assignments which you have already done. This will keep a check on your time and speed, and you will be in the rhythm that you need to complete your assignments.
2) How can you concentrate on your homework?
Building concentration power is something that is within your mind. It is kind of a self-control thing. But, there are few tricks and tips which, when you will follow, then you can surely concentrate on your homework.
In the first point, I discussed how to focus on homework? To build focus, you need to concentration. So, at this point, I will tell you the tips on how you can concentrate on your homework. Let’s get started.
i. Preparing to do homework
- Find a silent place to work- Wherever you sit, just check whether it’s a peaceful place or not? All the noises distract you, and then there is no way that you will be able to concentrate on your work.Your room is the best place where you can close the door and study silently. Make a routine so that all around you know that it is your study time. If you don’t have a separate room then find out the time when you feel that it is quiet at home.
- Keep everything with you that helps you with your homework like paper, pen, etc. If the things are not near to you, then you will keep on searching for them, and your concentration will break.
- You need to eliminate all the distractions which are the reason to break your concentration. E.g., Switch off phone or keep it in silent mode, etc.
- Make a checklist list for all your assignments so that you know what all work you have to do. Making a schedule is must.
ii. While Doing your work
Apply the following steps:
- Start the engine of your brain and take a minute to think- give your brain a chance to switch over from any previous activity towards studies.
- Start with doing the hard assignments first- This is because initially, your mind is fresh, so you will be able to relax later on when your energy gets low.
- Speak words out loud while doing homework- This builds in more concentration.
iii. Stay Healthy and Motivated
- Take on short breaks for a walk of half an hour. This lightens up your mood, and your mind stays healthy, and you feel fresh.
- Don’t take too much caffeine intake as it is not good. Drink plenty of water instead.
- Try to take help from other people if you feel stuck with your studies. The best way is to do a group study. This keeps you motivated.
- Enjoy delicious food or watch a good movie, once done with your assignments. It’s like a treat to you which will keep you happy.
3) Tips for helping your kids with their homework.
These days, most of the kids are more into other activities, and they concentrate less on their studies. Some do sit to study but face real-time difficulty in completing that homework. It becomes the parent’s responsibility to help their child with the homework.
In this point, I am going to tell you few tips with which you can help your kids regarding their homework. The question, “how to focus on homework,” will vanish away after you read these tips:
- It is not always the parent’s responsibility to take the blame on themselves if the child is not doing good regarding homework. There is another aspect too. Try to ask the teachers. They are the one who teaches your child and gives them the homework. If your child is not performing well, go and talk with the teacher.Ask them- how long should the homework take? What is the purpose of the homework? Is it learning, grading, etc. Also, tell the teacher about your child regarding all these questions. They should know that how much the child can understand the homework.Discuss everything with the teachers, after-all it’s their responsibility too.
- Set a timer when your child sits to study. The timer will help in making a routine for your child. Your child will get into a habit that yes I have to sit at say, 5 p.m. and then one hour is my study time so the timer will be set till 6 p.m.You need to help your kids as they might feel it difficult initially as they are still learning. Be with them all the time if they need you. Your support will boost their confidence, and they will know that you are there by their side.
- Make a plan with your kid for the whole week. Explain to them how it will work, and you can even tell them that it’s a kind of friendly challenge and they will get treats at the end. This is not to make them run in a race; it’s just to build their interest. Trust me this works.Support your kids emotionally and comfort them that it’s ok to sometimes not being able to score good grades. Tell them that try hard next time and don’t give up. Your kids will get boosted by your comfort. They will feel your support an then grow strong.
- Getting help for your child is one thing, from which you should not run away. Sometimes, kids don’t understand their parents so in such cases they might listen to others.Bring their friends and ask them to study together. They might want to play, so let them play first and then guide them that it’s time to study. Provide them with good healthy snacks, and you are good to go.
So, guys, this was all about how to focus on homework. I hope all your questions regarding, “how to focus on homework” are answered in this article. If you liked this information, then kindly do let me know through your valuable comments below and also do subscribe to my Blog.
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