When it comes to obtaining good academic results, not only intelligence counts but also the effort and time dedicated to studying. In fact, research published in the journal Psychological Science revealed that many of the study techniques used by students are ineffective. Based on the research that has been conducted over the past decades, these psychologists concluded that many children resort to inadequate study techniques, which slow down the acquisition of new knowledge and the development of skills.
According to this research, in which a dozen study techniques were compared, the most effective are as follows.
The most effective study techniques for children
1. Time plan
It is simply aboutimplementing a calendar in which study activities are distributed throughout the week. In fact, one of the main problems of children, especially when they are young, is that they are easily distracted and forget to do their homework, so this technique is very useful to indicate at what time of the day they should do their homework and when they can play. Of course, it’s not about overloading them with school activities but just about fostering a good study habit.
2. Verification tests
The typical question and answer tests, in which the correct solution must be selected, are an excellent study technique since, by offering different alternatives, they also stimulate reflection. And best of all, they can be applied to any subject, from Mathematics to History or Biology.
3. Questions and answers
The goal of education is not for children to memorize content but for them to understand it. For this reason, an excellent study technique consists of asking questions about the subject, questions that should promote reflection, as if it were a Socratic dialogue. At the same time, try that these questions allow you to establish a connection with previous knowledge, in this way the new content will be inserted into the existing knowledge structure.
4. Apply the theory
When the child can put into practice the knowledge that she has acquired on a theoretical level, it is consolidated as it is integrated into the existing knowledge system. Therefore, it is recommended that you find practical examples and that you try to relate the contents of different subjects, so that your child understands everything as a unit.
On the other hand, in this study it was appreciated that some conventional study techniques s that are even taught in school can be ineffective if they are not complemented by other strategies or if they are applied mechanically. These techniques are:
This technique is based on marking the relevant information in a text, but it is only effective when the child assumes an active role and is able to determine the important data for themselves, since in this way they are stimulated operations of thought such as analysis and generalization. However, this technique does not fulfill its purpose when the underlined information is provided or when the child does not know how to detect the relevant information from the insubstantial one and practically marks the entire text.
Young children find it more difficult to understand written information, so it is useful to teach them to make outlines and drawings that serve to represent the information to be learned. However, for the technique to be effective, the drawings must help memorize and really understand the contents.
When children are young, the effort involved in the act of reading makes it difficult to understand the text. Therefore, it is convenient that you ask them to do a second reading aloud, so you can concentrate better and pick up details that you missed at first. Also, ask him to summarize the relevant information. However, for the technique to be really effective, it is essential that the child does not repeat what he has read by heart, but rather explains in his own words , in short, the essence of the text.
Obviously, these study techniques should not be applied rigidly. For example, while she is reading a text you can interrupt her in different sections to ask her questions, ask her to summarize what she has learned or give her practical examples. In fact, dividing the content into smaller units makes it easier to understand. In any case, the effectiveness of the study technique depends on the active role that the child assumes. The child must be involved in learning it.