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    Study Skills

    Has anyone used a study skills program for their middle schooler? I think my rising 8th grader would benefit from something that taught note-taking & outlining, time management, goal setting, and maybe even how to handle an online class. I see that Well Trained Mind Academy offers a summer course called "Study Skills with an Intro to Online Learning" and IEW sells a product called Victus Study Skills. Does anyone have experience with either of these? Are there other options out there? I don't think MP offers anything specifically related to study skills unless I'm missing something.
    DS, 11 (MP 7M)
    DD, 8 (MP 3M)
    DD, 5 (MP K)
    DS, almost 1! (chewing on books and knocking stuff over)

    #2
    Greg Landry of CollegePrepScience.com offers a Student Success Skills class. Very brief sessions, very focused skills set. I used it for a nephew I was prepping for re-entry into the school system. I highly recommend it. It focused on the importance of note-taking, responsibilities of the student in terms of time-management, and how to properly do a lab report.
    22nd year homeschooling:
    DS 17 (autism, tech genius)
    DD 12, 6A (former micro-preemie; only baby in NICU with a library by her isolette)
    3 bonus students: nephew 13 and twins 8 (SC)
    Graduated:
    DS 29 Working on Master's in Architecture
    DD 20 my right hand: knits incredible things
    Class of '21:
    DD 23, Summa Cum Laude (Self-designed major psych/ communications)
    DS 22 Magna Cum Laude (Philosophy/Music dual major)
    (proof a classical education at home can yield amazing results)

    Comment


      #3
      Homeschool Connections also has a handful of classes on these topics: How to Be an Excellent Student, Organized for Success (separate sessions for middle school and high school), The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens. My big kids did the Excellent Student a couple of summers ago (they have monthly sessions I think) - I don't really know whether it has had a lasting impact or not. It certainly is good to give kids the time to reflect on these skills and to convey the importance of working on them. On the other hand, I told them they should feel free to create their own system, something they call their own based on their needs and preferences.
      DS (16)
      DD (15)
      DS (7)

      Comment


        #4
        The Great Courses has How to Become a Superstar Student. I have never watched it, but most are free online from the library via hoopla or on dvd.
        Dorinda

        Plans for 2021-2022
        15th year homeschooling, 12th year with Memoria Press
        DD College Freshman
        DS 10th grade - Lukeion Latin and Greek, Vita Beata Greek Dramas
        DS 8th grade - Vita Beata Literature
        DS 3rd grade - Vita Beata Literature, Right Start F, First Form Latin

        Comment


          #5
          Thanks, everyone. I’ll check out your suggestions!
          DS, 11 (MP 7M)
          DD, 8 (MP 3M)
          DD, 5 (MP K)
          DS, almost 1! (chewing on books and knocking stuff over)

          Comment


            #6
            We've already checked out the above Great Courses DVD from the library. It's...interesting. If you go the Hoopla route, they break every single chapter down into individual rentals, so it could take you a few months to watch the whole thing depending on how many downloads you get from your library system.

            We've gotten a lot of mileage out of a good planner and fun ways to personalize it. My artsy girl loves stickers, colored gel pens, and such to keep track of assignments, due dates, and reminders to study. In addition to MP's incredible flashcards, we also make our own, especially with lists. I also have my student make flashcards that help her figure out WHEN to use certain formulas or operations.

            We also like to use colored markers to box like terms, highlight endings, etc. The "How to Mark a Book" pages in the guides are a great resource as well.

            Two notes on writing as a method for memory-retention:
            1) Pen/pencil-and-paper note-taking is superior when put in the students' own words. Summarizing key ideas, dates, & themes had more long-term pay-off than writing down entire phrases/every word. Typed notes (in a scientific study) showed no significant memory aid on quizzes or tests.
            2) Figuring out what a teacher plans to test on is important. If lecture material is extra, only to help a student understand, it might be best to listen and make connections in the brain, writing only where details weren't clear. If lectures provide content that will also be tested, use an outline note-taking system. If lectures are only on content in the student guide or book, use the lecture to highlight (mark) key terms in the book that the teacher mentions.
            Mama of 2, teacher of 3
            Summer: First Start French I
            SY 22/23
            6A, teaching TFL & CC Chreia/Maxim in group, and Koine Greek
            MP2 w/ R&S Arithmetic 3


            Completed MPK, MP1, MP2, 3A, 4A, 5A
            SC B, SC C, SC1 (Phonics/Math), SC2's Writing Book 1

            Comment


              #7
              enbateau Thanks for the feedback. When you say the Great Courses program is interesting, do you mean strange? Or actually interesting? Would it be appropriate for a middle schooler to watch, or is it more for a parent?
              DS, 11 (MP 7M)
              DD, 8 (MP 3M)
              DD, 5 (MP K)
              DS, almost 1! (chewing on books and knocking stuff over)

              Comment


                #8
                I don't see whom that video helps. It was cheesy. It pushed outdated ideas on "modalities of learning." It made constant references to evolution, hundreds of thousands of years and how man evolved from primates as a means of explaining basic processes in the brain. It told students they should take a break every 15 minutes to text friends and check in on social media. I about died. My eldest could not stop rolling her eyes. We don't do any of that around here, but I know individual households may vary in their kids' cell phone and social media use. Frankly, anyone older than 14 would think the entire thing lame.

                Most of the solid advice we were already doing: only instrumental music, quiet study environment with access to necessary resources, change up where you study, take short exercise breaks between smaller bursts of work (MP gave this advice in MPK), color code or use symbols when taking notes (thanks IEW KWO workshop!), limit distractions, summarize when notetaking, ask teachers questions after class if you don't understand or want to study/engage further.

                If I read your OP correctly, you're looking more for WHAT to do, not inspiration. There is a surprising amount of videos on utube about how to take notes, study, etc, from people who aced high school and SATs. Some of them are pretty well made. It's worth a look at a few. Look for ones with multi-million watch-counts (like from studytee, revisign, studyquill). Please watch everything yourself, as some "channels" start good and end weird. Definitely check out the Cornell note-taking method, and try not to get jealous of all the beautiful handwriting!

                When I was in college, I drew little pictures on the front of flashcards that cued me in to events/key ideas/dates. When I recalled info for tests, I could still see the colors I chose in each picture. I also recorded my own voice so I could write down things I needed to spell or write from memory and check. My eldest does this now, too. I come up with a lot of ditties for my Latin students. Just encourage your kid to use whatever it takes to remember details. If your child will never have good enough handwriting to take legible notes, there are some cool reviews of the ipad pro with stylus. I'm never a fan of digital devices because they are usually too great of a distraction (especially for my kids), but...it looked pretty cool.
                Mama of 2, teacher of 3
                Summer: First Start French I
                SY 22/23
                6A, teaching TFL & CC Chreia/Maxim in group, and Koine Greek
                MP2 w/ R&S Arithmetic 3


                Completed MPK, MP1, MP2, 3A, 4A, 5A
                SC B, SC C, SC1 (Phonics/Math), SC2's Writing Book 1

                Comment


                  #9
                  I was poking around the Highlands Latin website and stumbled across this:

                  ​​​​​​Study Skills Boot Camp
                  ● Monday, July 25, 8:30-11:30, Crescent Hill
                  HLS will be holding a study skills boot camp for upper school students. Skills presented
                  and practiced are keyboarding, bookmarking, note taking, outlining, and personal
                  organization. RSVP to [email protected] by Monday, July 18.

                  Any chance something like this could be offered online for homeschooled students? tanya, pretty please?!
                  DS, 11 (MP 7M)
                  DD, 8 (MP 3M)
                  DD, 5 (MP K)
                  DS, almost 1! (chewing on books and knocking stuff over)

                  Comment

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