Are you a high schooler struggling to complete assignments and projects on time?
It is very common to find students, especially high schoolers juggling multiple responsibilities and commitments that they are not able to complete their tasks on time. They have so much on their plate which makes it difficult for them to organize and manage their to-do list. As a consequence, they are not able to meet deadlines and end up in a chaos of assignments, projects, assessments, and many more.
During high school, It becomes crucial for students to learn to strike a balance between their academic and personal commitments. To practice so, activities can come to the rescue. These can help in bringing creativity and innovation to the classroom all the while learning to manage time.
This article presents you with a compilation of different activities that can be easily employed in order to learn to optimize their time, achieve greater productivity, and reduce unnecessary stress. Activities can help students develop a sense of control over their daily routines and prepare themselves for success both in school and beyond.
Innovative activities to teach time management to high school students
1. The Real Office
High school students are on the path to building a better future with further academics and networking. The activity focuses on facing the real world with time management skills.
- Choose two captains for the team
- Let captains select their teams including 5 members
- Now, each team is an official team wherein the captain becomes the boss who manages different departments
- Give different types of tasks to the boss and ask him/her to complete them within a given time frame
- The tasks could be writing a poem, getting a few things from other teachers, finding some books from the library, and so on
- The challenge is for the boss to delegate tasks according to expertise so time is taken into account
As high schoolers turn into employees, they are more likely to understand how managing time in a corporate life works. This activity also promotes team building and time management through strict deadlines for tasks.
2. Hunt for Time!
The activity is designed to help high school students practice time management skills through a fun and interactive scavenger hunt theme.
- Start by dividing the class into small teams of 3-4 students each
- Assign points to different elements in the scavenger hunt
- It can include getting a certain book from the library, learning a certain answer, writing an essay, or finding a leaf from the school ground
- The task is to strategize and prioritize the hunting process to maximize points in the minimum time
- As the activity ends, calculate points and assess the student’s learning about time
This activity can be modified to suit different class sizes, time frames, and skill levels. You can also encourage the students to create unique time management hunt ideas to add to the list.
3. Be the Auditor!
Time Management starts with reflecting on one’s everyday behavior and interaction with the surroundings. This activity throws light on first recognizing the shortcomings on a personal level.
- Start by introducing the concept of time auditing
- Ask the students to keep track of their activities for one day
- They should record the time spent on each activity and a brief description of what they did
- Ask the students to review their activity log and calculate the total time spent on each activity
- They can also categorize their activities into different groups, such as schoolwork, leisure or socializing
- Ask the students to reflect on their activity log and identify areas to improve their time management
- For example, they may notice that they spend too much time on social media or watching TV and not enough time studying or exercising
- Finally, ask the students to share their insights and strategies with the class
This activity can help high school students become more aware of how they spend their time and identify areas for improvement. It also encourages them to set specific goals and develop a plan. Furthermore, this can also be an interesting back-to-school activity for the kids.
4. Pomodoro Technique
The activity involves introducing the Pomodoro Technique to the students and explaining how it works. The Pomodoro Technique involves breaking work into intervals of 25 minutes, followed by a short break of 5 minutes.
- Explain how to set the timer or stopwatch to 25 minutes for work and 5 minutes for breaks
- Group the students into teams
- Give each group an assignment to do within a certain amount of time.
- Ask the students to apply the Pomodoro Technique to finish the work, which might be anything from creating a marketing strategy to redesigning a brand’s logo.
- Work should be done for 25 minutes, followed by a 5-minute break, and so on until the assignment is finished
- Ask the students to consider their experience with the Pomodoro Technique after the assignment is finished
As high school students are on their way to deciding careers or further studies, introduction to such techniques is a smart way to make them aware and confident.
5. Jigsaw Puzzle
Jigsaw puzzles have been used in various time management activities. This activity also focuses on team building and managing time in an efficient manner.
- To conduct this activity, take a big Jigsaw puzzle
- Divide the students into teams and each team shall have the puzzle
- After this, ask them to start making the puzzle without having the big picture
- They need to strategize, learn, and come up with their own creativity to solve the puzzle in the minimum possible time.
With this activity, students learn to communicate with their team members while ensuring to complete the puzzle in the minimum possible time. It helps them bring their leadership skills as it is a deadline-oriented task. Hence, this can also be a fun leadership activity for young adults.
6. The Matrix Fun!
High school students are often concerned about their multiple tasks and make mistakes in prioritizing them. This activity involves proper allocation of tasks in hand.
- Introduce the concept of a task matrix and its importance in managing time effectively
- Draw a grid on the board with four quadrants: Urgent and Important, Important but Not Urgent, Urgent but Not Important, and Not Urgent and Not Important
- Ask the students to brainstorm a list of all the tasks they need to complete in the upcoming week
- Write them on sticky notes or index cards
- Provide each student with a set of sticky notes
- Ask the students to categorize their tasks by placing them in the appropriate quadrant on the board
- Set a timer for 10-15 minutes and ask the students to prioritize the tasks in each quadrant
- They should focus on completing the tasks in the Urgent and Important quadrants first, followed by the tasks in the Important but Not Urgent quadrant
- Ask the students to reflect on their task matrix and identify any tasks that can be eliminated or delegated
As students get an opportunity to actually assign their tasks into quadrants, they are more likely to understand the importance of prioritizing tasks and managing time effectively.
7. Reflect and Realize
The objective of this activity is to help high school students experience the consequences of poor time management and develop strategies for managing their time more effectively
- Divide the student’s teams of 4 members each
- Explain that each group will be given a worksheet with a scenario and a set amount of time to complete the task
- It could be a creative scenario to find a solution or a corporate-level issue kind of scenario
- Set a timer for the given amount of time, and ask the groups to work on their task
- At the end of the time limit, ask the groups to stop working and reflect on their progress
- Ask them to identify any areas where they struggled and any strategies they used to manage their time effectively
As students exchange their sheets, they realize the importance of managing time effectively to complete a given task. It also helps them reflect their behavior towards time.
8. Clap Clap!
The subjective understanding of time often differs from practicality. This activity is all about getting to know how time works for different people.
- To conduct this activity, ask students to hide all clocks and watches in the classroom
- Now, blindfold them and let them sit
- Ask them to mentally calculate two minutes and clap when they feel 2 minutes are over
- Make sure to record the process to explain later.
As students count and clap at different timings, it shows how everyone assumes time in a different way. Students may also learn about the importance of mental math calculations and perceptions toward time.
9. Classify and Discuss!
Time management also focuses on prioritizing and strategizing before taking any task in hand. This is a challenging activity wherein students need to understand if a certain task is actually important.
- To conduct this activity, divide students into teams of 2 members each
- Now, ask students different scenarios and they need to classify them either as Time Teacher or Time Waster
- For example, if the scenario is about playing for 3 hours in a day, both teams need to classify if it is a time teacher or time waster
- In case both teams have opposite views on a particular scenario, they are free to discuss it wherein other students can also join
This activity is about understanding how different tasks are prioritized differently by students. It helps them set time smartly and learn about setting priorities.
10. Stranded on an Island
Any situation in life demands the right usage of timing and decision-making skills. This theme-based activity enables students to form teams and understand the criticality of different situations.
- To conduct this activity, make a scenario where students are stranded on an island
- Now, give them a long list of materials that are available on an island
- Within 2 minutes, they need to decide what is essential and what is not essential to make their way out from the island
- Invite an open discussion about how they manage to think about the solution in 2 minutes
When students are set in a pressured environment, they are more likely to manage that time wisely. The activity helps them understand the importance of choosing the right resources in a time-sensitive situation.
Grasping the important skill of time management might be there on every high schooler’s bucket list. Time management activities offer a comprehensive learning experience as they involve various aspects of organizing, planning, and decision-making. Right from being creatively smart to practically analytical, the activities offer a package of knowledge on time management.
Along with the above-mentioned activities, teachers should try creating a diversified learning environment through different platforms. Online games and productivity applications for time management can also be significantly influential for high schoolers. Teachers should note that their suggestions and open discussions help students with time management in everyday life.
Sananda Bhattacharya, Chief Editor of TheHighSchooler, is dedicated to enhancing operations and growth. With degrees in Literature and Asian Studies from Presidency University, Kolkata, she leverages her educational and innovative background to shape TheHighSchooler into a pivotal resource hub. Providing valuable insights, practical activities, and guidance on school life, graduation, scholarships, and more, Sananda’s leadership enriches the journey of high school students.
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