04 Mar Time Management Skills that Kids Can Master
Children should be taught how to manage time wisely from an early age in order to ingrain the habit into their very core. This means a lot of dedication on your part as a parent.
Focusing on time management skill development in young kids makes them more likely to be organized when they are older and achieve more than their peers.
In a recent study conducted on the impact of time management, it was noted how being able to manage their time is an extremely beneficial trait for children. It was also found out that there is a significant and positive relation between time planning, time management and academic performance of students.
If that is something that you would like for your child, you will need to know the ways in which you can teach him how to manage time wisely from a young age.
What is Time Management for Kids?
Time management for children is mostly about building habits rather than the minutiae of the task.
Simply put, it’s about instilling the virtue in them through a concerted, repeated effort until it becomes second-nature to them.
The technical details will only come later when they gain a better understanding of what time management is supposed to be.
By that time, they should hopefully be more receptive.
This is actually similar to how adults are taught to manage their time.
In a piece written by time management coach Elizabeth Grace Saunders for Fast Company, she recommended starting tasks to establish habits that help one get things done.
How to Teach Kids Time Management Skills
You can teach your kids how to manage his time by having him go through certain exercises on a consistent basis. The idea is to get him used to the motions until it becomes second nature to him.
Here are some easy steps that teach your kids time management skills:
1. Concrete Planning
One of the most important things you can do to make sure that your child will actually be able to manage his time wisely is to instill the ability to plan properly.
This is basically where you help him create a detailed map of the things that he is meant to do in any given time period.
By having him go through this exercise, you are teaching your child to think in a more detailed fashion than he might be used to. The more he plans, the better he becomes at it, and the more natural the practice will become.
2. Using a Calendar
A good tool to use for planning would obviously be the calendar, which is likely something that your child might not have paid too much attention to.
Other than weekends, holidays, and Christmas, children rarely pay attention to dates.
This is something that you need to correct in your child. He needs to learn to use dates as a useful marker for things that he has to do. Doing so will add urgency to his task.
3. Time, Location, and Dedications
Dividing the practice of teaching your child time management is in itself a way to teach him time management.
Once you have decided on the time and place where a particular activity is meant to take place, you need to keep to that schedule as closely as possible.
Rescheduling must be avoided at all costs, particularly if the reason is something trivial. This way, your child will know how to stick to his commitments.
4. Checklist Creation
Making a checklist as part of the planning process basically makes it easier for your child to keep track of what he needs to do.
Checklists are simple, easy to understand, and effortless to remember.
Having a daily checklist to use will help your kids prioritize tasks and become more responsible
Plus, being able to check those boxes can be quite satisfying.
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5. Fewer Distractions
While setting your child to a particular task, you must make sure to remove as many sources of distraction in his environment as possible.
This includes TV, smartphones, toys, or even people. Even books should be kept away if your child is an avid reader when the task does not need them.
Creating deadlines for your child to complete his task adds urgency to the equation.
He will be less likely to be complacent if this is done right.
To that end, you need to make sure that you are setting reasonable deadlines.
If the task takes an hour to finish, do not set it at 30 minutes.
Learning how to prioritize tasks based on importance will hone your child’s ability to make good decisions. However, this needs to be done right.
Specifically, you need to teach this trait gradually by making the tasks obvious in terms of importance.
Make it clear that one is more important than the other before proceeding to more complicated lists.
8. One At a Time
It is very important that your child is not overwhelmed by the list of things that you are making him do.
This is why you have to make sure that he will only be doing tasks one at a time.
Discourage him from doing multiple things at the same time because this will make him more likely to commit mistakes.
Emphasize the importance of doing one thing right instead of doing multiple things haphazardly.
9. Smart Breaks
Finally, you need to be smart about giving your child a break.
This means making sure that he does not overwork himself.
By giving him the opportunity to relax and slack off a bit, his mind will be able to recover.
This will then make him less likely to break down and become frustrated.
As with any practice in raising children, from teaching them how to be more responsible, to teaching them how to stop fighting, these methods require a lot of patience. If you succeed, though, your child will thank you for your efforts.