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How to Get Better Grades in Middle School

by Jennifer Brozak

For many kids, the transition to middle school can be challenging. Instead of one teacher and one classroom, middle school students generally have multiple teachers and classes, which can mean an increased workload and increased academic stress. However, earning good grades in middle school is essential, as good study habits will pave the way for academic success in high school and beyond.

Get Organized

In middle school, your child will be juggling a slew of subjects, different teachers, and a variety of assignments, books and papers that could end up at the bottom of a locker if they're not organized. To stay on top of homework and assignments, you can help your child create a binder or folder for each class. You also may want to invest in a day planner or calendar so he can write down when assignments are due.

Avoid Distractions

Growing up in a digital age, today’s tweens and teens think they are no strangers to multitasking. They insist they can read or study while listening to music and checking their social media updates. However, according to a study by Bridgewater University, multitasking -- texting or instant messaging while reading -- prevents students from learning as effectively as their less distracted peers. If you want your middle schooler to get better grades, you can limit her exposure to technology while she’s studying or reading.

Ask for Help

If your middle schooler is having trouble with a certain subject, reach out to the teacher for help. At first, have your child be a self-advocate by talking to the teacher about the issue he’s having. Perhaps he’s having trouble seeing the board or he’s sitting beside a class clown who’s distracting him. If the problem is more academic, have him talk to the teacher about staying after school or working with a tutor to get back on track.

Find a Homework Buddy

Many teachers encourage students to find a classroom buddy they can rely on for homework help and test preparation. Homework buddies can also help your child stay on track if she misses school due to illness or other circumstances and can provide a sense of comfort if she feels lost when it comes to understanding a concept.

Go to Bed

Once children reach middle school, their sleep habits may begin to change. They may be staying up later finishing homework or be more involved in clubs or sports They may have just acquired their first cell phones and are tempted to stay up until midnight texting their pals. According to KidsHealth.org, adolescents need around 8 to 9 hours of sleep a night and younger children need even more, at least 10 to 12 hours. Many children don’t get enough sleep, and being chronically overtired can be detrimental to a student’s academic performance. Sleepy kids have trouble concentrating and can become so irritable that they have trouble managing their emotions. To ensure your middle schooler is getting adequate rest, maintain consistent bedtime rules, even if it means your kiddo has to hand over his cell phone every night before bed.

About the Author

As a mother, wife and recovering English teacher, Jennifer Brozak is passionate about all things parenting and education. A graduate of the University of Pittsburgh and St. Vincent College, Jennifer writes features for the IN Community magazine network and shares her daily escapades on her blog, One Committed Mama.

Photo Credits

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