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How to create a productive revision space for your teen

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June Forsyth April 19, 2023

Exam season can be tough for both teens and their caregivers. It’s a period of high stress and worry for everyone involved, and it lasts a relatively long time, meaning that your teen needs to keep their cool for longer than just a few days. This can be really hard, especially when they’re tired and just want a break to hang out with their friends. 

By creating a supportive environment at home, you can show your teen that you want to help them and that you respect the space and quiet that they require. That way they can focus on learning the things they need to, rather than constantly battling with a noisy household, which may increase their stress even further. In this post, we explain how to create the perfect study space to set them up for success.


Give them a separate space

A separate study space doesn’t mean a whole room to themselves – it’s unlikely that many of us will have a room going spare. However, it does mean creating a nook or corner with a desk where your teen can go to focus. Working at the kitchen table, which is often the heart of the home, won’t allow them the calm they need. 

This can be in their bedroom or in any other room – if you’re looking to keep things compact, you could always consider a folding desk that can be put away when it’s not in use. Just make sure that everyone knows that when your teen gets the desk out, they’re not to be disturbed. 

Consider getting a box for your teen to put any spare revision notes or stationery in when they’re not using it if they don’t have a permanent space. This will save them from going around the house trying to find everything they need, and will help them get focused. If they’re using a shared room, you may also want to get them some noise-cancelling headphones.


Don’t insist on neat order

Whilst many of us think that revision spaces need to be an ordered area with a neat stack of books and a notepad, that’s not always best for your teen. Everyone has their own way of working, and some people find that having organised chaos allows them to get their work done and their thoughts down on paper quicker. 

Equally, your teen might rely on post-it notes, mind maps or coloured diagrams to help them understand their school work. It might not be your choice of interior decoration, but try to allow them to keep these up during their exam season, even if they’re all over the house. Make sure that any younger siblings know not to touch these as well to avoid any arguments.


Make it appealing

Revision can be a slog for many teens – it’s not top of their list of activities, especially if they find academic study really hard. But forcing them to revise can be an uphill battle on your part as well as a reason for everyone to fall out. 

Try to make the study space appealing to your teen, whether that’s ensuring they have a favourite mug to drink out of or simply a nice notepad and pens to write their notes with. If you’re buying the desk new, you could also allow them to help pick out a desk or chair, to ensure that they’re comfortable. Whatever it is, if it’s possible and it encourages them to study, then it will be worth it.


Make it easy for them to manage their time

There’s two problems when it comes to time – one, time runs away with you, and two, time passes so slowly it’s hard to motivate yourself. Having a clock or timer on the desk can help teens keep track of their studies, and ensure that they’re remaining focused. Whilst they could simply set a timer on their phone, it’s actually better to use a separate clock to avoid distractions. That way, they can put their phone away during revision time but still stay on target. 

If your teen is reluctant to part with their devices, then suggest a time-tracking app. There are apps available that allow you to ‘plant’ a tree, for example, and for every minute you don’t touch your phone the tree grows bigger. The game-style aspect of these apps may perhaps make them more appealing, and having to stop and confirm you want to leave the app may break any cycles of checking social media.



Author bio:  June Forsyth: As an English tutor, Jane sees plenty of students through their exams. She knows how stressful it can be for parents and teens alike, so aims to write posts that will share actionable tips to help smooth the path to success.







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