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Good Study Habits Lead to Success

January 7, 2014
By Peggy Gisler and Marge Eberts - Dear Teacher , OVParent

Readers: While 2013 has ended, this school year is not quite at the halfway point. You now probably have a very good idea of how the year is going for your children.

So much of the success that children have in school is due to the study habits that they have. This is true whether they are just starting school or are in college. Bad study habits eventually can lead to poor performance in school.

Why don't you have your children take the following quiz to see if they have any bad study habits? A "yes" answer to any question shows a problem or a potential problem area where you or they may wish to make a New Year's resolution to turn things around. One caution: If it appears that your children have several bad study habits, do not have them try to change too much with their resolutions. Just one or two resolutions may pay big dividends in improving their study habits.

1. Are you using Facebook or other social media while studying? If so, your grades are probably lower than those who concentrate on their school work.

2. Do you frequently copy classmate's homework? Depending on classmates does not help you learn a subject.

3. Are you a procrastinator? Leaving everything to the last minute and cramming for tests may help you pass, but it does not lead to permanent learning of a subject.

4. Are you a negative thinker who does not believe that you can master certain subjects? If so, chances are you may never master those subjects.

5. Do you eat while you study? Fixing and consuming food may take too much time away from your studying. Instead, fix a small snack before your study session.

6. Do you try to get all of your studying done in one long study session? Short breaks can pay dividends.

7. Do you take frequent breaks while studying? Too many breaks indicate a short attention span.

8. Do you always study in the same place? The latest research shows that varying your study place is actually an effective way to study.

9. Do you do just enough studying to get by? Even if you are doing OK, you will learn more if you find an academic challenge.

10. Do you frequently study with groups of your friends? This can be an effective study habit, unless your study time is just fun with friends.

Question: When are students going to be tested on the Common Core Standards? How difficult will these tests be? How will the results be used? - Test Questions

Answer: Only four states - Alaska, Nebraska, Texas and Virginia - will not be administering the Common Core Tests. Minnesota will only administer the Common Core English Test. The tests will be administered in the 2014-15 academic year.

These tests will be more vigorous than any in the past.

And they may be used in the years to come to make decisions about retention for students as well as teacher job status and evaluation of schools. The tests at certain levels will require keyboarding and searching online for information.

Question: Now that we are in the age of electronic books, what are the pros and cons of using them in the classroom? Do they really help kids learn to read? - Avid Reader

Answer: There hasn't been a lot of investigation into the use of e-books in the classroom. The features that really help children learn to read have not truly been identified. There are those with animated characters, just text, narration, games and much more.

What has been observed is that e-books can serve as a motivational force for children with a low level of interest in reading, especially when the e-books have both narration and animation. Furthermore, e-books have been shown to increase fluency when stories are read to students, as they hear proper intonation and pronunciation. They also have been effective as instructional tools when new vocabulary is introduced by the teacher before the story is read.

Send questions and comments to Dear Teacher, c/o OV Parent, 1 N. Illinois St. No. 2004, Indianapolis, IN 46204, or log on to, or email



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