So your child lacks the drive to give their best shot in school?
Many parents, who are eager to improve their child’s academic life, approach this problem the wrong way through preaching, micromanaging, punishing, and threatening. However, these methods aren’t only useless – they make things worse. They may even take a toll on their parent-child relationship.
How will you encourage your kid to do better in school in a positive way? Take inspiration from these 9 powerful, surefire tricks, shared by parents and educators.
1. Establish an open and positive relationship
The message you want to impart is you’re his/her ally, not an arch-nemesis. Remind your child that you’re on the same team, and he/she can tell you anything.
Developing a positive, respectful, and open relationship with your child allows you to be influential. Your child will be more comfortable in sharing the things that bother him/her, like school-related burnouts, and you’ll be able to provide them with solutions.
2. Develop a routine and a structure
Do you notice your child’s grades dropping? Your kid might be distracted and unable to manage his/her time wisely. Instead of scolding him/her, simply help your child set up the structure and routine they’re unable to create for themselves,
Equip your child with planning and organizational skills. It might include enforcing scheduled study times and prohibiting the use of TVs and gadgets. You may say things like, “no phones or video games until the homework is done.”
Creating a structure isn’t a punishment. Rather, it’s an effective way to develop a good work ethic and improve focus.
3. Apply the “when you” concept
We get paid after we do the work – this is one of the key life lessons we’re all familiar with. You can apply the concept when motivating your child.
Use “when you” rules to remind your child about the positive results of studying and doing his/her homework – as well as the consequences of prioritizing gratification.
You can say things like “When you do your homework early, you can rest early and have more time to watch TV” or “When you review for your exams, you can answer the questions more confidently.
4. Break assignments into manageable pieces
One organizational skill every kid should learn is breaking down big tasks into smaller tasks. This technique can make any task doable and more manageable, keeping them from feeling overwhelmed and demotivated.
5. Give them a study spot that’s free of distractions
Is your child’s current study spot hindering them from focusing?
Your child may need a quieter location, perhaps somewhere away from rowdy siblings or noisy TV speakers. Or your child may do better in a room near a TV, as subtle noises can help him/her focus. Ask your child what works for him/her and keep them in that location.
6. Reward the effort more than the outcome
Every child loves receiving rewards for their accomplished tasks, whether it’s their favorite snack or a privilege. But make sure to send the notion that you’re rewarding the hard work, not the output.
If your child is too focused on the results, they may get easily discouraged when they don’t get the results they want.
You should be emphasizing the beauty of the process rather than the result. Praise them for pushing themselves and making sustained efforts to accomplish the task.
7. Give them a sense of control
Are you one of those parents who micromanage every last detail of their kid’s lives? Do you “over-function” by completing the work for them to ensure they’re meeting your expectations?
While kids often need a lift, it’s healthy to let them do their work and develop a sense that they’re in charge of their education and their lives. Let them make mistakes and learn from them.
8. Consider getting outside help
If your child’s grades and study habits are not up to par, you may consider getting outside help – like tutors.
Tutors, including but not limited to Math tutors and English tutors, can align their teaching methods to your kid’s specific learning styles and needs. They can help your child develop effective study habits and manage their time wisely.
According to an established Sydney Tutoring center, tutoring can also help your child become more confident and enthusiastic about learning and going to school.
9. Acknowledge their anxiety levels
Lousy attitude, irresponsibility, and lack of motivation can be forms of anxiety in disguise. While a little amount of anxiety can motivate your child, too much can block their ability to think and focus.
If you feel like your child is having anxiety, learn the best ways to respond. Help your child face their fears, like dreaded homework or complex subjects. Help them with their homework if they feel stuck.
Encourage them to take small steps forward and calmly help give him/her a better structure to get the work done.
Lastly, encourage your kids to talk about their feelings and listen. Let them know you understand and you’re willing to help in any way possible.
Author Bio: Carmina Natividad is a daytime writer for Inflow Education Tutoring Sydney, a Sydney tutoring organization, specializing in Math and English Tutoring. She enjoys writing practical tips on education, parenting, family, and relationships.