10 Bad Habits to Avoid this School Year
A bad habit is a behaviour that can erode at the very fibre of your study ethics and affect your academic career. It does not matter if you are still in the primary school or if you have moved up the ranks into the senior school, bad habits can follow you wherever you go. They are often slips into a comfort zone or they may be the way you cover up for your insecurities. Whatever the root cause is for bad habits, they are BAD, and that is why you need to identify them and eradicate them.
Here are 10 bad habits that may or may not have crept into your school career.
1. Not asking questions when you don’t understand something in class.
Students often feel they will be mocked for asking questions during a lesson. Questions are the only way a teacher is going to know there is a problem with your learning. The question you ask may be one other students want to ask, but feel embarrassed, just like you do. Asking questions brings you to the attention of the teacher who will be empathetic. When you ask a question it shows the teacher you are interested enough in the subject to want to find out the answers.
2. Memorising or rote learning instead of understanding.
Rote learning may give you the right words to use to answer a question like a parrot. These memorised words do not help you understand the subject and give an answer that shows you had the skills you need to solve other problems. Learning how to use the tools you are given is more important than just learning like a robot.
3. Keeping your phone around when you want to study.
Mobile phones are one of the biggest distractions for students in today’s education system. Smart phones have so many different apps and communication links. Each time a notification comes up on your phone your concentration is distracted to the phone and the messages you see. Paying attention to your phone can be a very bad habit.
4. Paying more attention to your friends than your teachers.
Everyone wants to be noticed and popular. Socialising and keeping up with social engagements becomes a habit that is hard to break. Sometimes it is your own ego that depends on being part of the ‘in crowd.’ Children in the more senior classes are especially prone to peer pressure and keeping up with their social life. Paying attention to the teacher and school commitments during school time is a better habit to promote.
5. Arriving late for lessons.
Punctuality is a life skill to learn. Arriving late for lessons is a bad habit to fall into. Wherever you go in life punctuality is a form of respect. Getting into the habit of being late regularly is not good for building reliable character.
Not only is it bad manners, but it will mean you miss the initial part of every lesson.
The proverb “Better late than never.” should really read “Better never late.”
6. Being the class clown.
Everybody loves a clown they say, but in the classroom getting into the habit of always performing is really irritating for the teacher and the majority of the students. There may be appropriate times for some humour, but the child who constantly looks for ways to be disruptive is usually the child in the class with some learning difficulties. It is better to get some help with any specific skills you may be lacking than be labelled as the class clown.
7. Handing in messy half-hearted assignments.
Not taking pride in your work is a bad habit to fall into. Sloppy, untidy work shows a lack of pride in what you are doing at school. It reflects poor work ethic and lack of dedication to your school assignments. Mistakes are part of learning, but getting into the habit of being untidy and slapdash shows you are not really serious about your school work.
8. Ignoring a problem instead of addressing it and getting help.
Although it may be challenging to ask for help it is by far the best way to solve learning problems. The class teacher will welcome the student who expresses their doubt about how to solve a problem. Getting into the habit of quietly hoping the problem will go away will not help with the student’s progress. Avoid the habit of not asking for help. Perhaps you need a short term of intervention to assist with the area you are experiencing difficulties. Once you have had some help, or a one on one tutor, you will be back on track stronger than ever.
9. Making excuses
Everyone has reasons for not completing work or managing to do what is expected of them. Always making up excuses for whatever it is you have fallen short on is a bad habit to get into. Excuses may be a cover up for a more serious problem and with an excuse in place the problem will not be resolved. Excuses can become such a part of one’s life they almost resemble habitual lying. This is a poor character trait and should be discouraged. Rather be truthful and face the consequences.
10. Not setting your goals for your year and reviewing them.
Goal setting is a very important part of planning and having a positive attitude to your work. Whatever stage of education you are at setting goals helps your progress. Without goals you tend to wander aimlessly through the school curriculum.
“Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.” said Les Brown. A motivational speaker and author of several books.
Setting great goals will be an incentive to lose bad habits and experience success at school. Look through the list of bad habits and make it your goal to get rid of those you think affect your progress.