"If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish anything," said Marty McFly in Back to the Future, and he's not wrong, but when it comes to homework, it's easy to get overwhelmed.
At LIFT, we know how you feel! Shhh, can you keep a secret? We all went to High School and had to do homework every day when we were teens, which wasn't too long ago! (A little bit longer for some than others.)
We know how difficult and stressful it can be to ensure that you get everything done on time while still playing sports, hanging out with friends, taking part in clubs, and spending time with family. We asked some teens what they do to help complete homework and took some of our knowledge from the past to come up with a Six-Step Homework Plan to help you believe in yourself and complete your homework. (We're not time traveling or anything, but we still think it's pretty impressive when you finish all your math problems and your English paper.)
Step 1: Write It Down
That's right, grab a paper and pencil and write down what you need to do. There's nothing worse than forgetting what your teacher said because you were too busy daydreaming about the big football game on Friday or the School Theater Club Show tomorrow. Gather your resources, write down your to-do list, and find a time to complete it. Even if it isn't technically in your home, just because it's homework doesn't mean you must do it at home. Complete your homework at school and save yourself time at home for binge-listening to Generation Perspective Podcast Episodes.
2. Location Location Location!
Find a place that makes you feel productive & at peace. It can be a coffee shop, a corner of a library, or outside next to a tree (take it from Rory Gilmore, once you find the perfect study tree- you won't want to give it up).
3. Gather Resources & Ask Questions
One of our teens, Sicily, says she likes using study.com, Quizlet flashcards, and the study materials that her teachers provide. Even if you don't always want to take home the packet, it might be worth it when you're stuck on problem 17 and the help is right there in the resources your teacher gave you. Also, don't be afraid to ask questions! Our teachers are there to help us learn in any way they can. If there isn't a teacher around to ask questions, find a family member or a friend! Suttons Bay Senior, Laila Vang, says she asks her siblings when she needs help.
4. Find Your Study Buddy
If you're someone who has trouble focusing when you're alone trying to complete a task, grab a friend and have them keep you company! Even if you're sitting together in silence, both working on separate projects, it's incredible how much you can get done when someone else is there. If you need extra help, you can always join LIFT for Homework Help on Wednesdays at the high school! We are always here to encourage you if you need it.
5. Take Care of Yourself
Don't forget to give yourself grace and take a few breaks while you’re working hard. Even if it's just a quick walk outside to stretch your legs, it can do wonders for your mental health. Of course, the only thing that anyone can hope for is that you do your best, so as long as that's accomplished, you've done the job.
6. Don't Forget It!
Once you're done with your homework, put it in your backpack or bag to take to school! You don't want to use the "my dog ate my homework" or "it's sitting on my counter at home" excuse too often with your teacher.
You might not be traveling back in time 30 years in a DeLorean with Doc, but completing all your homework and turning it in on time is just as important and spectacular.
If you're having trouble starting or focusing, try this Six-Step Process and let us know how it goes.
If you need additional help, you can always come to LIFT, where we are more than willing to sit down and talk through those math problems with you. Happy studying!