11 Essential Study Tips You Need to Know


We all “know” how to study – sit down and start going through your work. But it’s not as simple as that, is it?

With the exams upon us, I thought it would be a good idea to ask a teacher for some study advice and tips for parents.

Here are 11 essential study tips you should know and remember as a parent, compliments of Adele Keyser, Grade 4 teacher at Edgemead Primary School.

1. Determine what type of learner your child is

Visual, auditory or kinaesthetic? Don’t know what these terms mean? Well you should, because your child will generally fit into one or two of these learning categories. Understanding what type of learner your child is can help you help them.

2. Find a study method that suits your child

Drawing mind maps, colour-coding important information, creating flashcards, listening to pre-recorded notes and watching slide presentations with relevant notes, are some ideas you should try with your child.

He or she might not benefit from using all of these methods, but through some trial and error, you’ll find a study method that your child feels very comfortable using. And as soon as your child is comfortable with studying, you’ve already won half the battle.


3. Provide a space to study

Some children need to move around while studying, and others need a quiet sanctuary with a desk.

If your child moves while studying, don’t keep them holed up in a tiny room. Make sure that the area they use is available whenever they need to study, even though it may be an inconvenience for you to forgo your lounge or dining area for a while (or often!).

If your child prefers the solitude of their bedroom, it is not advisable that he or she learns on their bed.

4. Organise work before starting to study

Before studying, make sure your child understands the work to be studied. Break it up into smaller sections and make sure notes are organised and accessible. We’ve written an easy-to-follow guide on how create a study schedule.

5. Set a study time span

Determine a time span that your child is able to concentrate and study for. 20 – 25 minutes is preferable, maybe less for a younger child. Set a timer for this – a kitchen timer works wonderfully.

When time is up, ask your child a few questions to determine if what has been learnt has been retained. You can also set a short test (or take a look at WorksheetCloud – it saves you time by giving you online and downloadable tests with memos, all based on the CAPS curriculum).

Once you’re satisfied, let your child continue with the next section of work. Some children find it beneficial to study the same sections of work over and over, during the course of a few days, until they know it very well.

A once-off study session is never conducive to successful marks.

Girl concentrating

6. Create a timetable

Draw up a study timetable that is visible and realistic so that your child knows what is expected of them on a daily basis. This is a non-negotiable, and you as the parent have to be strict about this. Remember, you are the adult!

We’ve written a simple guide to creating the best study timetable. Read it here if you need help.

7. Teach how to make sacrifices

Children must learn how to prioritise life, especially during exam time. Teach your child that it’s a part of life to make some sacrifices to gain a good result.

8. Be prepared to make your own sacrifices

As a parent, you’ll need to learn to make sacrifices of your own. Before and during the exams, don’t book time away. Eliminate as much stress as possible by creating an environment conducive to effective learning.

Be available for your child, motivate and encourage them, and make sure that there are power snacks available and that they have plenty to drink. A good night’s sleep is also very important.

9. Empower your child

Help your child be prepared so that when they walk into an exam situation they are in control and confident. Make sure they have all the relevant stationery they need.

10. Remember that each child is different

Reflect on your child’s individual needs. Don’t be influenced by society, and don’t be afraid to ask your child’s teacher for advice.

11. MOST IMPORTANTLY: Your child needs you

You’d be disappointed if your child did poorly during an exam. Likewise, make sure you don’t disappoint your child by being disorganised and unprepared. Again, you’re the adult and you are ultimately the person your child is going to look to as a role model.

Always be prepared and organised. Pre-plan meals (freeze them if necessary – takeaways are not a good option during exams), make sure you drop your child off at school on time, and create a calm, supportive environment at home.

What study tips do you have for other parents? Share your comments below.

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About the Author

Adrian is the Product Director and Co-founder of Learning Lab Apps, the company that develops WorksheetCloud. He is an edtech activist, but also a firm believer in the effectiveness of good, old fashioned, hands-on teaching.


  1. Lianne

    Thank you! Am going to go through this with my child tonight! Just in time for the exams later this month….

    • Adrian Marnewick

      That’s great Lianne! Good luck with your exam preparation. 🙂

  2. Marilyn

    Thabk you for these exam tips.

    • Adrian Marnewick

      No problem Marilyn. Glad you found them useful. 🙂

  3. Caroline Lunganda

    I just wish I had this info- right from term one… 🙁

    • Adrian Marnewick

      Don’t worry Caroline – there’s still plenty of time left to implement the advice in this blog post. Good luck! 🙂

      • Itumeleng

        Thank you immensely for this app, my son is an auditory, but funny how quick he does his work, was surprised on the comprehension test which he did today,u believe this would be his best company as he is also into gadgets. He’ll be writting his English paper this week, so this came in right on time.

        Your response is so promptly, which means he’ll get the responses sooner.
        Thank you Thank you.

        • Ross Frank

          Hi Priscilla! Thanks for your comment! We’re so glad that your son is finding our app useful! Please let us know if there are any other blog topics you would like for us to cover in the future or if you have any questions regarding our content.

          Ross 🙂

  4. Promise

    Thank you for the exam tips.

    • Adrian Marnewick

      A real pleasure Promise. I hope you found them helpful. 🙂

  5. nadia van Niekerk

    I am so happy that I signed up for all this info to better help my son’s with their education. It is soon difficult to get boys to actually sit down and study but with your tips, encouragement and worksheets things can only I, prove for both of them.

    • Adrian Marnewick

      That’s really great to hear! Thanks for sharing Nadia. 🙂

  6. Barbara

    How do you go about determining what type of learner your child is: Visual, auditory or kinaesthetic?

  7. Anne Schamrel

    Great tips. We are using some of them since gr 4, but there are some that we can implement now in gr 6 and in the future. Fabulous!

  8. kgaugelo grace

    very interesting tips and i will definitely go through it with my son.

  9. Retha

    How can I determine what kind of learner my child is?? Any tests? Specific points to look for, any tips??

  10. Deidre

    My daughter is a visual learner, what wor
    ks best for her?

  11. Patricia

    I cant wait to start preparing my son. This is fantastic tips.

  12. Lizelle

    How can I determine what kind of learner my child is?? Visual, auditory or kinaesthetic? Any tests? Specific points to look for, any tips?? Please.

  13. Nicki

    Thank you Adrian! Worksheetcloud is a great help!

  14. Paul

    Just posted on our Mount Pleasant Primary FB page. Great info.

  15. Tanya

    How can I determine what type of learner my son is ? Is there a test or something he can do to understand this ? tks for great advice.

  16. Tanya

    How do you tell what type of learner your child is?

  17. Berenice

    Thanks for the tips. I will definitEly keep it in mind. I see a few people have asked the question of how does one determine what type of learner your child is but you have not responded to that question yet. As the exams are coming up shortly, what are the quick wins for now to be able to assist our kids immediately. The tips given I can use for the future.

  18. Pascaline

    Great tips to keep in mind. Thanks

  19. Elze

    Before we start studying my 12 year old has to draw a picture of herself climbing a huge mountain.The mountain then gets filled with words discribing everything that will distract her from studying for the exams. It is important that she identifies the things that will challenge her and she must sacrifice for her results. After that we draw up a time table and identify how much time she has to cover high volume subjects.We test her knowledge on the subject before any studying starts because this identifies the gaps in her knowledge and the work that needs more revision time. New words and definitions are changed into a game. Exams are stressful enough, turning studying on its head might be unconventional but her results prove that it works.

  20. Oscar Dass

    Visual, auditory or kinaesthetic?
    As a quick rule of thumb (and by no means exhaustive!) learning styles are as follows:
    Visual – learner likes reading, making notes, etc Can generally work well alone.
    Auditory – learner likes listening to how things are done. usually likes working with a friend and interacting by teaching each other, asking questions and so on..
    Kinaethetic – learns by moving. repeating facts, etc by singing, dancing or playing some mundane game like bouncing a ball, etc. Movement and action stimulate the learning process.t
    Generally we all possess all three styles but usually one predominates. Ask your child when do they learn best – this should give you some idea as to their predominant style.
    Don’t get fixated on the idea that learning is a quiet process.
    But ensure that this is not being used as a “cover-up” to engage in social media!

  21. Masnoona

    Thank you for these tips I will certainly make good use of them. I would like to know if I can forward these tips to my parents as I am teaching.

  22. Jeanne

    I believe that one of the most important things to include in a study programme is doing past papers/tests if available. I haven’t looked at what you have available in your worksheets but I believe that this is essential. There is evidence that those that achieve the best results are those that work from papers, and not after studying, but as a means to study. Using your notes to create perfect answers to the questions. In effect you are going through your notes/studying as you do this.

  23. heidi merrington

    Any advice on someone who can held give study techniques to our kids.?

  24. Elna

    Thank you. I did share. May you be blessed for ever.

    • Kayleen Olivier

      Hi Elna

      Thanks for your support!

      Please let us know if you have any questions and we’ll be happy to assist.

      Kayleen 🙂

  25. Berenice Scheepers

    Hi Kaylene
    May we publish these tips in our School Newspaper?

    • Kayleen Olivier

      Hi Berenice

      Thanks for your message.

      We are so glad to hear that you found our latest blog article so helpful!

      WorksheetCloud would be delighted for you to share this information in your school’s newspaper. We just ask that you please credit WorksheetCloud.com for the article and provide a link to http://www.worksheetcloud.com.

      We would also love it if you could sent us a copy of your newsletter so we can add it to our ‘Hall of Fame’.

      Please let us know if you have any questions or require any further information, we’d be happy to help.

      Kayleen 🙂

  26. Basudha Modak

    Along with studies.getting up and going to sleep on time is essential as also some exercise daily.

  27. thenjelwa

    thank you for the tips

  28. lydia

    thanks for your tips really appreciated

  29. Sharon

    I am so so happy to be apart of the worksheet family. I never knew until now that I had a tutor at the tip of my children’s fingers. No words to express my thankfulness. You changed the game of parent support
    I feel so included in my children’s school world. God bless you and may you grow from strength to strength

    • Ross Frank

      Hi Sharon! Thank you so much for your wonderful comment! We’re feeling pretty lucky that you chose us to help your child improve their studies, and we just want to say thank you on behalf of the whole company!

      Ross 🙂


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