Some parents believe that students don’t learn because their teachers are ineffective. Some teachers believe students don’t learn because their parents don’t care. While there may occasionally be some truth to both statements, they are far too simplistic to explain why some students aren’t motivated to learn.
While neither the teacher nor the parent is responsible for a student’s lack of motivation, they can both play a role in motivating students to do better. Here are some suggestions to share with parents on how to boost their children’s motivation. Parents can:
- Actively demonstrate the value they place on learning. Parents who communicate with teachers and attend local school functions are showing the value they place on education. So are those who discuss ideas at home, read with their children, play games like Monopoly, Scrabble and chess, or encourage their children to take part in creative projects.
- Talk about learning at home. The best way to motivate their children is by asking what they learned in school, listening to what they have to say and sharing their enjoyment in the learning that took place.
- Let their children know they can learn. Before children can learn, they must believe they can learn, and they must believe that the work they invest in school will pay off. Parents can send their children a powerful message by reinforcing the importance of hard work in mastering virtually any subject area.
- Get involved in their children’s school. Parents who participate in at least one school activity send a strong message that education is important. Children who believe education is important are most likely to be motivated to learn.