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Getting Your Teen To Prepare For Finals

I am the mother of a seventeen year old and since we wanted her to do well in school we had to come up with some creative ways to get her to study. If you are a parent of a teen, you have probably talked untilĀ  you were blue in the face about things like keeping their room clean, doing their chores and studying, or maybe it was getting good grades.

Of course you know the key to getting good grades is adequate preparation in the form of studying. Getting teens to study and allow adequate time to study is like trying to climb Mt. Everest in the Winter dressed in Summer clothing. If you are not prepared it’s not going to happen. Just like in reaching any type of goal you have got to have a game plan. Just paying lip service to the task will ending up giving you nothing but frustration and aggravation, two things we don’t need as parents.


When my daughter was younger it was so much easier. One of the reasons that it was so much easier is because from as early as preschool we had rituals and schedules. Once we were home she would get a snack and immediately afterwards she would begin her homework while I prepared dinner. We did this most nights unless there was an event. This worked wonderfully from preschool throughout middle school. Once she got to high school it was a different story.


What her friends thought and did was much more important than what we telling her to do as parents. We were always in a constant battle with school work, chores and meeting our other obligations like making it to her dance classes on time. In her freshman year, there was a big math take home test. Because it was a take home test I guess the instructor felt that they should take every waking hour that they were not in school to complete it. And you know what happened, because it was a big and daunting task, her and her classmates procrastinated.

What eventually solved the dilemma was having a study party. What that involved was inviting about 9 of her classmates over, and providing food(chips of all kinds, sandwich meat and bread, cookies and other foods that adults don’t consider as food but teens do). The party started at noon and ended somewhere around nine or ten later that night.


What will make your party a success are two factors. One is communicating with the parents of the students so that they will be on board with the idea and allow their children to come and know how much time is involved. Prepare to be home or have an adult at home for about 10 hours or more. You will not have to really do to much of anything so you can get a lot of your own personal things done and just pop your head in the room periodically so that they will know you will be checking in on them.

The second thing is the hardest. DO NOT CHECK IN EVERY 5 MINUTES ON THE KIDS! The reason why is because you don’t have to, you are going to have a lot of time, this allows for breaks, gossip, eating and the intending goal studying. The girls ending up policing themselves. Yes there were some that just wanted to lolly gag but the others that wanted to do well kept them on track and focused. The group motivated one another and kept one another on track. It was like a mastermind group for teens with the goal of getting a good grade on this take home test. This was much more effective than me constantly telling them to study.

I have had many study parties through out my daughter’s high school years and they have paid off tremendously. Those parties kept me sane and with a head full of hair. They helped me not to be a nagging parent but a more effective parent, accomplishing my goals in a way that kept harmony, fun and peace in our household. Please try this with your teen and let me know how it turns out. If funds are limited ask the parents to contribute a snack or divide the food up and have each child bring something. So try it and have a blast! D’TaRelle :-)


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