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50 Tips to Help Students Succeed Review by Tess Hamre

Marydee Sklar
Executive Functioning Success

50 Tips to Help Students Succeed: Develop Your Student’s Time Management and Executive Skills for Life sounds like one of those catchy titles you see on social media. The title sucks you in but often the article is a disappointment. Not so with this book. This book delivers the promised content.

The book is divided into ten chapters. The first chapter is an introduction. Chapters two through ten contain the 50 tips arranged by type:

  • Start Here to Help Your Child
  • Time Tools are Critical
  • Hassles over Homework
  • Procrastination
  • Conflicts Beyond Homework
  • Handling Distractions
  • Challenging Chores
  • Other Reasons Children Struggle in School
  • My Final Tips

Marydee Sklar also includes two appendices:

  • Evaluating Executive-Function Skills: Your Child’s and Yours
  • Resources

This book is really a quick and easy read. Although it is a quick and easy read, it takes time to work through and implement the tips. Change is hard and it takes time but it is possible. Ms. Sklar encourages “change requires taking an action. So, try a tip at a time. Work with it; adapt it to your family.” (p. 18)

That’s the approach we are taking in my family. More than just tips, tips that have helped my family, I have gained insight as a parent. It had not occurred to me that my child might just have an immature brain. In 50 Tips, the author explains that brain function, specifically the executive function skills of the brain are the last part of the brain to develop and so even at 16, 18, and 20 my children’s brain function is still developing.

My 18 year old daughter read this book and came to me with suggestions such as purchasing a watch and buying a different type of timer to help her be able to see how much time is passing. As a family, we’ve started having family meetings and we’ve moved our calendar to a place where we will all see it. The entire family has benefitted from the 50 Tips book.

Every now and again I come across a gem that I wish I had found earlier. This book is one such gem. I found these 50 Tips to be helpful for myself as well as for helping my teens. My daughter even read the book herself and began to implement some of the tips. This is a must have book for parents of all ages whether you private school, home school or use the public school system.

-Product review by Tess Hamre, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, February, 2016