There are many reasons why a kid feels discouraged to study. Likewise, there are many ways to encourage and inspire them. Based on research and experience, here are 12 tips that can help both you and your kid to enjoy learning.
How to encourage my kid to study? You will need patience, trust, and the ability to balance everything to encourage a kid to study. As a parent or guardian, proper and strong communication with the kid is also very important. Through these things, you can guide your kid with their studies.
Each kid has a unique approach to studying. There is no one-size-fits-all way to encourage a kid to study. Still, there are countless tips you can use to provoke your kid’s interest in studying.
Causes that Discourage a Kid to Study
There can be many possible reasons why your kid feels unmotivated to study. Identifying the causes can help you to decide on effective ways to encourage your kid. This can also help you to guide them as they try to overcome their issues.
Possible causes include:
- Difficulty in understanding lessons and/or study materials
- The work is too challenging or not challenging enough for your kid
- Mismatch with the kid’s learning style
- Low self-confidence
- Your kid feels uncomfortable in the learning environment
Practical Ways To Encourage A Kid To Study
Designate An Organized Study Area
Disorganized and distracting study space can make the kid overwhelmed and unmotivated. To make learning easier, choose a study area that is quiet and organized. Make sure that all the supplies they need are accessible and well sorted.
Encouraging them to organize their space can also boost their sense of responsibility.
Create A Study Plan With Your Kid
Sit down with your kid and plan a study schedule together. Having a structured routine is useful in ensuring your kid is on track with their studies. Allow them to have their input to come up with a balanced schedule.
The plan should include:
- Schedule for their homework
- Time spent on each subject
- The activities they should focus on
Discover Your Kid’s Learning Style
Knowing their learning style can be helpful in encouraging them to study. There are four types of learning styles: Visual, Auditory, Reading/Writing, and Kinesthetic. Letting the kid work with their learning style can produce the best learning outcome. It can also make lessons more engaging and easier to grasp.
Fill the quiz below to discover your kid’s learning style:
Use Their Strengths And Interests
While it is important to support them in subjects they are struggling with, you should focus on your kid’s strengths. Acknowledging their existing talents inspire them to do better. Since your kid is already good at one or some areas, studying can be easier and more interesting. Developing their strengths makes them excel in their studies.
Using their interests can also make learning fun and exciting. You can use these interests in pushing them to explore more topics and subjects. Using things — like toy cars, building blocks, or dolls — as props for lessons will capture their attention.
Encourage your kid to communicate their opinions and feelings
Making them feel comfortable in expressing their opinions and feelings can reduce stress. Allow them to be more open about their views on education and other things.
Listen and validate their feelings. Reassure them that their opinions and feelings matter. If necessary, educate them without making them feel judged or discouraged. This can raise their confidence and willingness to study.
Have study breaks
Kids have limited attention spans. Although it is nice to inspire them to study hard, you should also teach them to have study breaks. Managing their study sessions into short periods can refresh your kid’s mind. Aside from making your kid more focused and engaged, this can also reduce their stress level.
Be patient and give your kid time to replenish and refuel.
Other activities which can help your kid to de-stress are:
- Taking short walks
- Give them snacks and drinks
- Permit them to use digital devices
- Creative activities like drawing or coloring
- Let them enjoy a short playtime session
- Meditate and relax
Set Small Goals
Setting your kid’s goals will depend on their age, interests, and aspirations. But, it is crucial to remember to start with small goals. No matter what type of goal you set, it will be easier for them to do it by starting small. Small goals are more achievable and in the long run, this will challenge the kid to aim bigger. From a short-term goal, guide your kid until they shift to long-term goals.
Goal setting should inspire them to persevere and enjoy studying. Make them choose which goals they would like to do first. Don’t forget to make fun and productive goals.
Learn to set effective goals for your kid in this article on “Why is setting goals important?”
Teach them to learn from mistakes
Explain to them that it is okay to make mistakes. Inspire your kid to turn mistakes into learning opportunities.
Ways to help you teach your kid about mistakes:
- Let them know that failing and making errors are a normal part of life.
- Reassure them by saying you don’t expect them to be perfect.
- Recount your own experiences about committing mistakes. Tell them what you learned about it.
- Make them feel responsible for their actions and mistakes.
- Don’t rescue your kid from mistakes. Allow them to find solutions to their problems.
- Enlighten them to be more forgiving when messing up.
Acknowledge your kid’s effort and celebrate their achievements. Praising them and offering rewards will boost their morale. This will also inspire them to study harder.
Share your eagerness to learn
Become your kid’s best role model when it comes to learning. Kids often observe and learn from their parents or an adult. If your kid sees you enjoy studying, it is likely they will share the same enthusiasm.
Tell your kid stories about what you have learned in school or books. Influence them to think of studying as something fun and fulfilling.
Make reading a habit
Introduce reading as a fixed part of their daily lives. Reading is a basic tool of learning. Kids who develop a habit of reading may have fewer struggles when it comes to studying. Consistent reading widens your kid’s vocabulary and improves their communication skills. It is also helpful in processing and understanding lessons better.
Enable your kid to develop and learn to enjoy reading by adding it to their daily schedule. Consider it as a family activity and spare some time to focus on reading. Always read to your children and ask them to read along.
To further inspire them, fill their learning space with reading materials. Give them permission to choose the material that they would like to read. Your kid can only develop a habit of reading if they are having fun. Be cautious about harshly imposing it and making it frustrating for your kid.
Find out more tips to make reading your kid’s habit in this article “How to Encourage My Kid To Read? (12 Tips)”
Exercise or do physical activities
Exercises do not only promote better physical health for your kid. It also has cognitive benefits that can aid them to study better. A physical activity before studying can make your kid more attentive and focused. It can stimulate the kid’s brain and improve their retention rate.
Regular exercise can enhance your kid’s health and mood. It prevents the kid from experiencing tiredness, and burnout.
General Advice On Encouraging A Kid
Overall, the most important thing is to focus on their learning experience. Avoid asking your kid about grades and test scores. Instead, know more about what they learned in school or books. Make them share about their discoveries. This will help them retain lessons better.
Performance is important to excel in studies. But, their experience is much more valuable when it comes to learning. In the end, you want your kid to feel inspired and encouraged to study.
How can you prevent a kid from losing interest? One way to prevent your kid from losing interest is by trying other learning styles. Your kid might have a dominant learning style that they prefer. But, you can encourage them to adopt and practice other learning styles. By giving the kid an option to switch styles, you will make learning feel non-repetitive.
Can you use a reward system to encourage a kid to study? Positive reinforcement such as rewards and gifts can heighten your kid’s drive to study. This is also known as extrinsic motivators. Extrinsic motivation usually makes the kid want to do tasks and achieve goals. In a sense, this makes the kid study hard because they are expecting something in return.
Like most things, extrinsic motivators should be applied in moderation. It can be effective in encouraging your kid to stay interested in studying. But you should also train them to feel motivated without any external reward. This is known as intrinsic motivation.
Intrinsic motivation is about doing a task because it offers internal rewards. Familiarize your kid with the concept of doing something because it is genuinely enjoyable. Make your kid think about the value and purpose of a task.