How to Motivate Your Child to Succeed in School

You want your child to succeed in education.  You spend a great deal of energy getting your child organized, property dressed and fed, to school on time, only to find that they don't to want to put the effort into getting their homework done, studying for tests, or learning the material they need for their subjects.

This seems to get worse as children get older, often reaching a crisis point in middle school when they begin to have different classes with different teachers, plus a host of other distractions and pressures that negatively influences their desire to succeed in school.

So how do you motivate your child to succeed in school? One tried and true method is to reward your child either with prizes, compensation, or other items that they value.

Providing your child rewards for behaviors you want to see reinforced allows them to gain pleasure in the task at hand knowing a desired outcome will follow (the prize).  Short term the child gets the prize they want.  Long term as a parent you achieve the objective of helping your child succeed in education by providing a motivation that is relevant to them.

You can offer your child various benefits for completing homework, preparing for tests and getting good grades (both at test time and reporting period levels).  Below are some ideas to try:

  • Have their weekly allowance vary depending on school performance; more weekly allowance for better performance and less allowance for poor performance.  For example, bringing home all their homework and completing it on time would earn them a high allowance week.
  • Offer a clothing allowance dependent on good performance, maybe for doing well on section or chapter tests; a good grade on a chapter test means they can pick out a new pair of sneakers, or a new sweatshirt their choice.
  • New video games: New DVDs can be good rewards for children, although of course it means adding to their screen time when they want to enjoy these prizes.
  • Trips: Awards of trips to the bowling alley, a video arcade or a pizza parlor serve as powerful motivation for your child to perform well.
  • Arranging for outside play, or play days with friends, due to better performance or completion of work, is another good reward.

A good mix of these different types of rewards can really motivate your child.  When used sparingly (so that they do not come to be expected), rewards on the whole are highly appreciated and yet do not cause other issues (with the exception of screen time awards, which must be carefully measured).  Note: We do not recommend food awards, for example candy bars, sweet treats, or other such items, as we do not feel that food should be tied to performance.

Another way to incorporate a reward system into your child's learning and development - specifically in math - is with GoldStudent.  GoldStudent teaches success in math partially through a reward structure.  GoldStudent rewards students for effort and progress on their math studies.  Students want to succeed in math with GoldStudent because the better they do, the more points they earn.  Students accumulate points and can exchange them for fun prizes (rewards) at any time.

Learn more about the GoldStudent motivational math system:

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Math Problem of the Day

Monday,  October 23,  2017

Question:

Find the average of 35, 2 and 11.
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