Is your child struggling at school? And if so, why? As parents, you feel like you should do as much as you can to help your children strive and reach their full potential. However, sometimes their grades reflect less than this, which is when you should react. Here are some smart and effective ways to improve your children’s academic potential and their grades.
Tell them why they’re studying
The first thing both you and your children have to understand is that grade itself isn’t really important. When your child only studies to get a good grade and out of fear of being punished, it might be your attitude that needs changing in order for them to change theirs. Explain to them and show them through examples that they shouldn’t acquire knowledge just for the sake of the grade, but to build up their competence. They should find practical use for everything they learn. Once they do, it should be their own decision to learn various skills and to advance at school, rather than simply complying to your or their teachers’ orders. As soon as they stop learning to please others and because they don’t want to disappoint anybody, they will do it with much more enthusiasm and less anxiety and stress.
Create a good schedule
For your kids to form good study and working habits, they need to have a fixed schedule. This means that they should study regularly and at about the same time every day. If their extracurricular activities make this impossible, create a weekly timetable and have them stick with that one. A good way to make a schedule is by doing it together with your kids, so that they have a say in it as well, since that way they’ll be more likely to follow it. Make sure that it doesn’t only contain study time, but also some time to play, breaks and their sports practices or any other activities they take part in. When they know exactly when they’re supposed to do what, they will procrastinate less and they won’t waste time between their study periods. This is important, since it’s how their brains get used to studying regularly and effectively.
Help them when necessary
Sometimes a bad grade is a reflection of your kids’ inability to master some part of their curriculum. When obstacles like this come up, you have to provide your child with all the support their need to overcome them. Occasionally, it will be enough to sit down and explain to them what they don’t understand. However, when you notice that you’re not doing enough to help them, don’t hesitate to ask for some assistance. For example, subjects like maths are often problematic for children. Although one of their peers might be a solution to get through this, it might be best to consider professional maths tutoring, so that you’re completely sure that the person working with your children has enough experience and is great with kids. A tutor like that can make complicated maths problems seem simple and even enjoyable to solve, so find one as soon as you realize your kids need help.
Introduce active learning
Whenever you can, make sure that you show your children how they can use their theoretical knowledge in practical situations. You can do this anywhere, whether in your garage and your kitchen or outdoors, in nature. If they have to learn about animals, take them to the zoo, so that they can get first-hand knowledge of the animal’s appearance, size and behaviour. You can do many chemical experiments in your own home or teach them basic maths by playing Monopoly. What better way to learn about plants than to actually go outside and pick some, or simply view them and touch them? Furthermore, your children can learn a lot from doing sports or playing musical instruments. Once they start exploring the world around them, asking questions about it and getting adequate answers, they will be learning actively without even being aware of it. This takes away a lot of pressure and makes learning more interesting and fun.
Inspire them to read
If you want your children to be successful in the long run and to be able to reach any academic success on their own, you have to ignite the love of reading in them. Read to them when they’re little and with them as soon as they learn how to read themselves. The key is that they perceive reading as something pleasurable and normal. Make reading more fun by turning it into an activity for the whole family and by asking and answering questions about the books you read, or even by doing roleplays of what you’ve read. This way your kids will find out there are correlations between what we choose to do and the consequences of our deeds. Plus, if they read regularly, their imagination will develop and their vocabulary expand without too much effort.
When your children develop effective study habits, they will learn with more ease and verve. Not only will this improve their grades, but also make them more self-confident and independent.