Creating daily challenges is an excellent way to increase your child’s motivation. One of the biggest reason for a child’s lack of motivation is that they feel that they will never be able to achieve the goals that are desired of them. Many parents and teachers are frustrated because their child is not receiving the grades that they would like them to achieve and they vent this frustration on the child. The child never wanted to do poorly in the first place, but for one reason or another they fell behind others. As the frustration mounts, students witness that frustration and assume they will never be able to meet the requests at excellent from their parents or teacher and thus learn to become unmotivated and uninterested because they feel they will never to be able to meet such high expectations.
When I perform tutoring, I often sit down to discuss the goals of tutoring with the parents and the student. When talking with parents of struggling student’s it is apparent that parent’s expect their children to do much better than they are. They want high grades and when talking to the student individually, student’s often express the same desire. So, if parents want their children to succeed and the children want to succeed, what is the problem?
The problem is that students often do not understand how to succeed. They attribute their failures to the fact that they are not smart enough or that they are too lazy, when neither is the case. They have developed a negative self-image of themselves and a great way to alter that self-image is to allow them to feel that they have made accomplishments and reward them for doing so.
If you want to increase your child’s motivation, start small. Begin by asking them to do a small task that they haven’t been doing. Depending on what their problems in school are the tasks will vary, so I will give an example of a strategy that I used with a student that I tutored.
The student that I tutored was failing all of his classes and he needed to feel a sense of accomplishment. On the first day of tutoring, I asked him to complete one small task, bring your books home from school. He forgot the first day and I simply said that it was ok, but that I would like him to bring home his books the next day. The next day he brought a couple of his books. I thanked him for bringing home is books and I asked him to make sure that he brought home all the books that we needed and by the third day he had remembered to bring home all of his books. I made sure to thank him and show him through praise that I appreciated what he was doing. I asked him to continue to bring his books home from school and then added that I wanted him to write down everything that he did in his math class. I continued on in this manner every day that I conducted tutoring, asking him to do one more task than the day before. If he forgot or didn’t do what I asked, I didn’t get on him, I simply asked that he try to accomplish that goal the next day.
It took a lot of time, but eventually the student has become responsible when it comes to his schooling and has improved more than he or his parents ever thought he could. If you create daily challenges, praise achievement and hold students accountable, you will find that motivation is increased and student achievement is improved. No matter how well or how poorly your child is performing, using daily challenges that encourage growth is an excellent way to motivate your child to improve.