5 Must-Have Books to Help Your Kids Master Time Management

By SCCFC on Tuesday, May 21, 2024
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Effective time management is essential for both children and adults who are looking to accomplish tasks like homework, chores, and errands in a timely manner. Through our work at South County Child and Family Consultants, where we specialize in neuropsychological assessments of children and adolescents, we frequently observe that many lack strong time management capabilities. A frequent piece of advice we offer is for both parents and children to engage with literature that can improve time management abilities in the younger demographic.


Children who possess adequate time management skills can navigate their morning routines—dressing and breakfast—without the rush to make it to school on time. They are able to manage to complete their homework while still finding moments for leisure activities before their bedtime arrives.


Adolescents who have honed their time management can juggle their commitments to extracurricular activities, complete their school assignments, hold a job, and still cherish moments with family and friends. Enhancing these skills is not only pivotal for academic success but also for carving out time to nurture social relationships.


If your child or teenager faces challenges in managing their time effectively, consider taking a look at books that could offer valuable strategies for improvement. Accompanying each recommended book below is a brief overview of the book and how you and your child can use it as a guide to aid in their improvement of time management skills. 

5 Books for Children and Teens to Improve Time Management Skills

  1. How to Do It Now Because It’s Not Going Away: An Expert Guide to Getting Stuff Done” by Leslie Josel (2020)

   Overview: This practical guide helps teens take control of their time by teaching them how to prioritize tasks, combat procrastination, and use their time more efficiently.

   Usage: Teens can read through the guide and apply the step-by-step strategies to their daily routines, while parents can support them by discussing the progress and challenges they encounter.


  1. Smart but Scattered Teens: The ‘Executive Skills’ Program for Helping Teens Reach Their Potential” by Richard Guare, Peg Dawson, and Colin Guare (2012)

   Overview: This book focuses on helping teens develop executive skills, including time management, task initiation, and goal-directed persistence, which are crucial for success in school and life.

   Usage: Parents and teens can work through the program together, using the book’s assessments and tools to identify areas for improvement and to track the teen’s development of executive skills.


  1. The Organized Student: Teaching Children the Skills for Success in School and Beyond” by Donna Goldberg and Jennifer Zwiebel (2015)

   Overview: This book provides a blueprint for parents to help their children organize their schoolwork, manage their time, and handle the pressures of school life.

   Usage: Parents can use the strategies outlined in the book to create a structured environment at home that promotes organization and time management for their children.


  1. Late, Lost, and Unprepared: A Parents’ Guide to Helping Children with Executive Functioning” by Joyce Cooper-Kahn and Laurie Dietzel (2008)

   Overview: This book is a valuable resource for parents of children who struggle with time management due to executive functioning issues. It offers advice on how to support and build these skills at home.

   Usage: Parents can read the book to understand the underlying issues affecting their child’s time management and implement the recommended practices to help their child improve.


  1. Make Time: How to Focus on What Matters Every Day” by Jake Knapp and John Zeratsky (2018)

   Overview: While not specifically for teens, this book offers insights into creating more time in our lives by rethinking daily habits and focusing on what truly matters.

   Usage: Both parents and teens can read this book to learn about prioritizing and making time for the important things. Families can discuss the principles together and adapt them to the needs of their children and teens.


In today’s fast-paced world, equipping your children with effective time management skills is more important than ever. Not only do these skills lay the foundation for academic success, but they also increase independence, reduce stress, and prepare your children for the demands of adult life. We highly encourage parents to explore these books with their children, or even have older kids read them independently. By doing so, you’re not only investing in their long-term ability to balance life’s many responsibilities. Remember, these books can serve as valuable tools for the entire family. We invite you to revisit our website regularly for the most up-to-date research and resources to further support your child’s growth and development in this essential skill.

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