Woodstown Middle School Moving through Middle School Organization and Study Skills
Introduction • Each new stage of life presents new challenges. • How we solve these challenges determines how we move forward into the next stage of life.
Throughout this year we will be doing a few lessons that reflect on how your responsibilities are changing, and how we can meet these changes in the most honest and healthy way possible.
To look at how our school responsibilities are getting more, challenging. • We will help you to develop a strategy to manage your assignments and time effectively.
What are ways to take on this challenge? • Overwhelmed – Where do I start? • Pretender – Pretend it does not have to get started right away. (Procrastination) • Avoider – Forgetting it exists. • Come Back Kid – Waits until the night before its due. • The Waiter – Only will complete when being directed by an adult. • The Worrier – Thinks about it all the time, but does not lead to productivity.
Goal of Today’s Lesson • To be able to … • keep track of all of our responsibilities, do them well and in a timely manner. • Experience the feeling that when we take care of our responsibilities, we feel less stress and enjoy our free time more. • Feel competent, successful, and satisfied with ourselves and our work. • Improve grades by completing assignments on time.
Reflection • Before we explain to you the specific technique for today’s lesson let’s reflect on the theme that we will revisit in each lesson… • Accept that school and life can be difficult.
Reflection • The best way to solve life’s problems is the development of good self-discipline • Delaying gratification - sacrificing present comfort for future gains • Accept responsibility for your actions and decisions • Dedication to truth, honesty in both worth and deed • Balancing – handle conflicting requirements, prioritize between different responsibilities
How to manage your time • Today we will teach you a few simple steps you can use to set goals, plan and use your time well. We know that just telling you will not be enough, so your teachers will also model and give you time in class to practice this technique. • We will use the NETS acronym to help you remember your steps.
NETS • Our NETS catch all of our tasks and keep them together.
Step 1: N – Name and Number • This is the most important step because it involves setting goals and choosing priorities. • When you name a goaland assign it a number, you make it real and make sure it is remembered. • In the real world this is when you write it on aTo-Do list. • In school, it will involve choosing items from your menus, circling them, and deciding which order to do them. • On your menu, circle the items that you choose to accomplish and number them in the order you plan on accomplishing them.
Step 2: ET – Estimate Time • Estimating how much time and energy is required for each task is essential to figuring out how it can be accomplished. • Be realistic about your estimate- sometimes tasks take us longer than we think, and sometimes we need to break up longer jobs into smaller pieces. • Remember to include time to gather up the necessary materials and to put everything away at the end. • On your menu or list, jot a time next to each task, and if you are going to need materials such as poster board or a computer.
Step 3: S - Schedule • You now must figure out how and when to get everything done on time. For this step you will need to make a plan that combines all of your different menus, other school responsibilities (tests or extracurricular) and out of school obligations.
Would this be considered a NET you could use to catch all of your assignments in?
A month-at-a-glance calendar often works well for this type of planning, so you can use the monthly calendars in your agenda. If you prefer, you could also use your week at a glance in your agenda. • Transfer all of your menu tasks onto your calendar, and add tests or other things to remember if they are announced. Five (5) menu points will be added by taking this step. • To save space, abbreviate. For example, four Language Arts menu items could be ELA1, ELA2, ELA3 and ELA4. • Consider the time needed for everything planned on that day; this will avoid planning too much for one day. If you spread out the tasks and use your time well in and out of school, you should not have to plan more than an hour of homework per night. • Refer to your calendar daily and check off items as you accomplish them. If you do not get an item done by the date you planned, it should be highlighted and become top priority.
Agenda Calendar No School No School No School ELA 3 Science 4 ELA 2 Science 1 Science 2 SS 1 SS 2 ELA Menu DUE Science Menu DUE ELA 1 SS Menu Due ½ Day No School
Other Tips … • Time yourself when you are completing assignments to see if your estimates are correct. • Bring home what you need and only what you need. • Use a Homework Folder with only what you need to work on for that night. • Always bring home your AGENDA! • Focus on one priority at a time and limit your distractions. Find a quiet time to work. • Remember to check off things on your calendar when you are finished with them.