“Education is not the learning of facts, but the training of the mind to think.” – Albert Einstein
Here’s the situation – “Your child took out all his/her books and notes, set up their study space, and actually started studying for the test that is scheduled for next week, but somehow, after just five minutes of studying a terrible feeling of procrastination creeps up. They feel like they have all the time in the world to study for their test or exams and it won’t affect their grades if they don’t study today only. That scenario drags on for an entire week and just a day before their exam/test, they realize the dire straits situation they are in. Now they have just one day to study for the exam and that procrastination feeling is replaced by a desperate fight or flight response. Looming next day’s exam puts them into action mode with their cramming study habits and they study for almost 20 hours continuously a day.”
The scenario is so common that studies suggest…
- Over 16% of students claim to start their studies only the night before their exams.
- Approximately 43% of the students said that procrastination is the main reason for not studying on time or in advance.
Observing that, parents often wonder “Does cramming for exams actually work?” – The answer is NO. Cramming doesn’t get you the results you desire even for board exams let alone for top-tier competitive exams like JEE or NEET. Not only that, cramming for exams puts extreme pressure on the student’s already stressed-out mind resulting in mental fatigue and wavering concentration for exams. To prevent that, it is extremely essential for parents to avoid cramming study habits of their children. Wondering how? Here in this article, we’ll discuss the actual causes of cramming and how to avoid it for long-term academic benefits in terms of better grades, exam performance, and ultimately results.
Causes of cramming:
- Procrastination: The first and foremost cause of cramming is Procrastination. Students believe they have more time to prepare than they actually have. Regrettably, this comes back to bite them.
- Fear of not retaining the information if they started studying too early.
- Believing that cramming is the only effective way to study for exams
Tips to avoid cramming study habits:
1. Follow a study schedule:
Now this is one of the best ways to avoid cramming for exams. Prepare a study schedule for your child and make sure they follow it diligently. You can ask their teachers and mentors to help you with setting up an effective study schedule outlining when and how much they need to study each day to overcome their cramming study habits.
2. Set daily targets:
Your child won’t need to cram a night before an exam if they have studied a bit of their syllabus every day. To ensure that they do, try to set daily study targets for them. That means, rather than jumping to study the whole chapter in one night, break it down into smaller topics/sections and cover each topic every day before going to bed. Once they finish their daily study targets reward them with something they like to keep them motivated. Setting up daily study targets and making sure that your child achieves them before retiring to bed is the proven way to abandon their cramming study habits.
3. Plan study sessions in advance:
Lack of proper planning is the root cause of procrastination. Research shows that approximately 41% of the students tend to procrastinate because they have not planned ahead what they need to study. That’s why it is imperative to plan your child’s study sessions in advance. Experts recommend that students should plan their study session at-least one day before. That way they won’t waste time wondering what to study, where to start, and they can also beat procrastination to get the work done.
4. Find the best study time for your child:
Best study time is the peak productivity time where your child’s brain is 100% active to learn new things. Some students prefer to study early in the morning while others choose to burn the midnight oil. As a parent, it is your responsibility to find the best study time for your child and make sure that they study during that period because during their peak productivity hours, the probability of procrastination has decreased to about 42%. Just a little push from your site and they are on their way to study.
5. Track their progress:
Track your child’s learning progress every day. You can either ask them to share what they have studied so far with you or take a small test by asking them to solve a few questions regarding the topic they have studied. This way you’ll know if they have actually understood the concept and its applications correctly or they need to practice more. Also if they are stuck somewhere, encourage them to ask for help whenever needed.
6. Reserve last day for final revision:
Rather than spending the last day cramming for exam, it is advisable to reserve your last day for the final revision. Plan it like your regular study schedule and revise or re-revise your syllabus to make sure that you have grasped each and every concept or topic thoroughly. Also, don’t study something new on that day, just lightly review what you have already learned and focus more on your difficult areas to better understand them.
These are some of the tips that you can use to overcome the cramming study habits of your child. Remember for competitive exams like IIT-JEE or NEET, cramming won’t work because the syllabus is huge and the twisted questions test aspirants’ critical and analytical thinking skills as well, in addition to the conceptual knowledge. Therefore, it is better to instill effective study habits from an early age and if you are looking for a reliable coaching institute for your child, look no further than ALLEN Overseas. With our innovative learning practices and expert faculty pool, we train students to outperform by focusing on the theoretical concepts and practical problems; keeping in mind the trend and changing patterns of the competitive and school level examination. Reach out to us with your queries, doubts, or concerns and we will gladly assist you.