How to Help Your Child/ Children Like School
It is an awful feeling for a parent to have to force a child who doesn't like school to go anyway. But of course, you have to make your kids attend school (because education is compulsory for one thing but also because it's important). So the key is to work on getting your children to like school from a young age on. There are a myriad of reasons that your child might not like school; identifying the reasons and then using some tricks to help overcome them can help your children like school from elementary age on.
Common reasons that your children may not like school include:
- Boredom. Many children get bored in school. The class work is too easy. The teacher has to give attention to everyone else in the class so the lessons drag on past your child's point of attention. Or your child's learning style differs greatly from the teacher's main mode of teaching. If boredom is the reason your children don't like school, figure out if the problem is the curriculum, the school, the teacher or your own child's learning style. Then make changes to accommodate these needs. This may include placing your child in honors courses, getting a student aide to give special attention to your child, or working on new learning styles.
- Problems with peers. This is one of the most painful ones for parents because there isn't a lot you can do about it. If your child doesn't fit in at school, you have to toe the line between stepping in and letting your child sort it out alone. Make sure that you're aware if this is the problem and if the problem is escalating. Helping children with this problem like school may involved self-esteem building exercises, making a point to allow extracurricular activities that have positive friendships, working with a counselor, peer mediation or possibly even switching schools.
- Pressure. There are many pressures associated with school and children start to feel them at a young age. This is especially true now that standardized test scores are so important in schools. Identify whether the pressure is coming from you, the teacher, the school, peers or your child's own sense of needing to perform. Work with your child to build self-esteem that isn't related to test scores. The key to helping your child like school in this case is to work on helping your child like learning and then letting school be a place for learning, rather than for performing.
Children who dislike school from a young age usually have a good reason, they just can't articulate it to you yet. As a parent, it's up to you to identify the root cause and work to solve the problem. The younger the age that you can do this, the better your child's chance of enjoying school more in the future. If, however, your child continues to dislike school, you may need to look at other options. The public education isn't for everyone. A specialized arts or technology school, an honors program, home schooling or some other form of alternative schooling may be the best way to help your child like getting an education
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