A curious, happy and intellectually stimulated student is a motivated one. If kids aren’t motivated to study and do well at school it means they’ve lost the sense of joy that should come with learning new things and accomplishing goals.
Kids can become demotivated for many reasons, and sometimes the problem lies outside the classroom. Here are some great ways to help kids rediscover the joy of learning.
- Find out where the problem lies. If a child is being bullied at school or having problems with their peers, they will often lose interest in learning. Tensions at home can also have a negative impact on motivation, so talk to your child about why they don’t seem interested in their school work. Also speak to their teachers about any social or learning problems they may be experiencing.
- Seek help. One of the main reasons kids lose motivation is because they’ve fallen behind. This often manifests in a lack of interest in learning and behaviour problems at school and home. Other students exhibit similar disruptive behaviours because they’re not being stimulated enough by the work. It can be hard for parents to know which category their child falls into. Professionals can assess students and help them catch up or provide extension activities to motivate them.
- Don’t focus on results. When it comes to school work, many parents only show an interest in their children’s results, but it’s also important to ask them regularly about what they’re learning. This helps kids understand that learning is valuable and exciting in itself, and not just a means to an end. It’s also a great way to help kids retain knowledge. Good results should be celebrated, but effort should also be rewarded. Focus on strengths rather than weaknesses and make sure kids know that failure is a part of the learning process.
- Encourage discussion. If you want your child to develop a curious mind, encourage them to talk about ideas, beliefs and current events. Also include kids in family decisions whenever possible, and provide opportunities for them to make decisions that affect their lives. This will develop their critical thinking and communication skills, and give them confidence to participate in the classroom. If kids feel like their opinion matters, they’ll enjoy learning about new things.
- Help with organisation. Sometimes children lose motivation because they feel overwhelmed. This is particularly true for older students who can struggle with the pressure of homework, assignments and exams. An excellent way to overcome this problem is to help students organise their school work so that it’s manageable. This may involve tidying up their work space at home, creating a wall chart for assignments or breaking down tasks into a series of steps.
These tips will help demotivated students enjoy learning again!