Ep. 70: How to Help Students Develop Good Study Skills with Jenny Aguilar, M.Ed., ET/P

Mar 1, 2022 | 0 comments

Many parents say that their kids struggle with study skills. But what are study skills? Are students taught study skills or are they developed naturally? Today’s guest helps demystify study skills and guides us as parents, caregivers, and educators in supporting our children, adolescents, and even young adults in developing the skills necessary to learn.

Jenny Aguilar is an educational therapist who specializes in supporting students with ADHD and math and writing challenges. She is passionate about instilling a growth mindset to all students, enhancing their confidence, and making learning fun and accessible. This includes study skills and habits. In this episode, Jenny explains what studying is and how it may vary per student. She also emphasizes the importance of rewarding the process instead of the outcome as well as creating the right environment for studying. This may mean something different for each student and even each subject or study task. So, take some notes while you listen because the tips she offers in this episode might make all the difference for your learner.


Show Notes:

[2:35] – Often, children are told to study but don’t know what that means. Studying means you devote effort and time into learning something.

[3:10] – There are many different ways to study including passive and active.

[4:18] – Active studying is more challenging but more effective.

[5:19] – Passive studying makes one feel like they’ve learned a lot but doesn’t always stick.

[6:31] – Jenny teaches kids what happens in their brains when studying and learning.

[9:32] – Study plans are great tools that implement spaced practice rather than cramming.

[10:47] – Study plans interweave previous lessons and content and make it clearer what needs to be practiced more.

[13:12] – Attention issues, slow processing speed, and anxiety can make studying very challenging.

[15:51] – It is important to acknowledge effort and provide support needed for students who struggle with studying.

[17:24] – Sometimes students with poor study skills will spend their time reviewing material they already know because it feels safe.

[19:06] – Preparing students for what would happen if they study and if they don’t study gives them a better mindset and the tools to make their own choices.

[22:09] – Parents, remember that students want to do well. Rather than focusing on the outcome, focus on the process and highlight their efforts.

[24:27] – Notice how your child is behaving instead of emphasizing the amount of time spent working. Take breaks when needed.

[26:02] – Jenny notes that sleep and rest are crucial to being sure students are present in their learning.

[29:06] – The physical space in which you study makes a huge difference.

[31:01] – Scan the environment to help students make decisions about their study space.

[33:28] – Phone notifications are extremely distracting.

[34:32] – Students need to vocalize and make their own choices in their study environment to make it meaningful.


About Our Guest:

A certified educational therapist and an active member of the Association of Educational Therapists, Jenny Aguilar specializes in supporting students with ADHD and math and writing challenges. Growing up, Jenny panicked anytime a teacher assigned a writing assignment and every time she entered her math class. After seeing her students grapple with the same challenges and feelings, and their self-confidence dip, Jenny became a certified educational therapist.

Jenny has over ten years of teaching students in private and public schools and coaching students 1-1. In addition to having completed the JST- Coaching and Training Teens and College Students with ADHD program, an ICF-accredited course, Jenny has been trained by Peg Dawson to support elementary-aged students and young adults in executive skills. She’s passionate about instilling a growth mindset into all students, enhancing their confidence and reframing their narrative, and making learning fun and accessible. She holds a Master’s degree in Education and teaching credential from Pepperdine University and an educational therapy certificate from the University of California, Riverside. Her private practice in West Los Angeles supports students in person and virtually! 


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The Diverse Thinking Different Learning podcast is intended for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for medical or legal advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Additionally, the views and opinions expressed by the host and guests are not considered treatment and do not necessarily reflect those of ChildNEXUS, Inc or the host, Dr. Karen Wilson.