Assignment Planning 101 – Helping Your Child Stay In Control

Planning is so much a part of our lives – schedules, calendars, and diaries. Parents can help their children to develop the habit of planning especially the assignment planning. It is a key to success and valuable at primary and senior levels.

If you ever watched the A-team in action you remember the catchphrase:

‘I love it when a plan comes together!’

It is making that plan come together that is the baseline for staying in control and experiencing success. The art of planning can start from an early age taking one element of planning at a time and building on to the skills. Make this skill a habit and positive feelings of being in control will take place. Focus on what to do, as well as the where, how and when.

Time is always at the root of any plan. Use this acronym of TIME to help form a plan. Build on your child’s organisational skills giving them more control over their assignments. This will take time initially, but practice these skills and show your child how to get the most out of the planning time.



1. Tasks

2. Information

3. Mind maps

4. Environment

Take TIME to plan for success stories.


Take time at the beginning of the week to review the tasks and talk about planning. Make a list of the tasks and show your child how to prioritise and identify the most pressing at the time.  Make use of a whiteboard if you have one and divide the board into two halves –

one side is TO DO THIS WEEK  list and on the other side (tick) TODAY.

To do stays up for the week and today gets wiped off at the end of the day ready for the next day.  It’s a fun way to end the day as you swipe and wipe out the things you have completed.

Sticky notes can also work well as a means of listing the tasks.  Blitz the sticky note as you finish the task.  Most schools provide a homework diary and daily tasks or notification of projects.  Find a way that fits in with your family’s routine to highlight the tasks and be ready to tackle them.


Knowing what is expected and how to meet deadlines is a vital piece of information.  Teach your child to list tasks and then with each task have a when, what, how and who approach to see you have all the right information.

  • When is the assignment due – timelines work well
  • What is expected – a project, oral or written, a test
  • How will you get the best results?
  • Who are the key players to make this a success?

This will take a bit of practice and younger children will need more support.


Visualising the task is a great way to set out the when, what, how and where part of your planning.  Use a simple spider diagram and make your child the centrepiece, just a smiley face mojo will do.  Then draw the legs of the spider pointing to all the different parts of the plan.  Something rough and ready to stick up on your news board or on the wall near your workspace.


Having an organised workspace is very important.  Show your child how to keep his workspace neat.  Provide a stationery box, a shelf or place to store things and a spot for the planning notes or whiteboard.

Create a positive vibe around planning:

  • Have a special homework time
  • Reward good behaviour, merit charts are fun and great incentives.
  • Don’t forget to factor time to play after the daily tasks!

Learning to plan is a great life skill for children.  Take time to show them how to use planning strategies.  It is a way to help them to be in control.

It has been said that:

Failing to plan – is planning to fail!

It takes TIME to plan, but learning to plan is well worth the time and the effort.

Get one-on-one support

If your child could use help with a specific subject, assignment planning or you would like one of our certified tutors to work through to ensure a productive and successful school term, call and speak to one of our consultants today on 1300 4200 79 or click here and fill in the form and your regional manager will be in touch.


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