As a parent, you can probably recall how easy it was to be distracted by a phone or the TV as you did your homework. Children today have the same trouble, yet magnified many times greater! They have computers, iPods, and cell phones with the ability to instantly text-message their friends…and instantly receive text-messages from their friends.

As a generally self-disciplined adult, I myself cannot even resist the temptation to check my emails or text messages every time I hear the “tone” announce their arrival. How can we expect children to focus?

Social media, texting, and chatting are huge distractions for all of us; especially for our teenagers. Encourage them to put the phone away – or just take it away temporarily – to reduce the opportunity for unnecessary time waste. As sophisticated as our brains are, they are only capable of processing one set of input at a time.

Make it easier for them to focus. Negotiate the conditions for using a phone during a study session, e.g. leave it in the kitchen and only switch it on during breaks.

Better still, why don’t we ALL , mum and dad included, leave our phome chargers permanently in the kitchen? Then we ALL benefit from a sound, phone-free night rest!