I hope that everyone had a wonderful break and are rested and ready to begin the next semester of school.
Whether your child is in kindergarten, in high school or anywhere in-between, that first day back to school can be bittersweet. As much as I adore the unhurried days of the holidays with my children, I also look forward to having life a bit more structured once school begins again in January.
Coming off the much needed break, I need to make our classroom a happy place for my kids and me. While I was elated school began again, my children were less than thrilled. I heard many groans and comments about how horrible school was. I thought to myself, ‘I really need to keep my children excited about learning’!
I have pretty high expectations for my children and sometimes this discourages my children. Encouraging my children’s efforts (and not just their A’s) spurs on their learning and keeps them motivated. One thing I have learned over the years is education and momentum go hand in hand.
Getting off on the right foot out the door sets the tone for the rest of the school year. I help my children stay organized use study methods that work for each of them and build on their individual strengths. And believe me, all my kids learn differently. Since we are organized and prepared, when a problem comes up, everyone is ready to tackle it and stay on track.
Another way to keep the motivation up is we look for the subjects and topics that really spark my children’s interests. When I find the special subject that my children really enjoy, their desire to learn accelerates and I do what I can to keep this motivation going. Even if I have absolutely no interest in the topic, I remain just as excited as my kids do.
Here are some things I do to keep my children motivated about learning.
- Purchase magazine subscriptions on the subject of interest
- Take outings to museums, live performances, or symphonies
- Locate a class or session in my community (I have even had local college students come in and ‘tutor’ my children on much loved subjects)
As long as my children are curious, they are motivated to learn, but when their curiosity dies, their motivation to learn suffers. I have learned if I keep curiosity levels stimulated, the motivation to learn is always increased. Go explore your city and all it has to offer you and your children and learn about new things while you are out and about. It will keep kids excited while they learn new things.
How do you keep kids motivated halfway through the school year?
Teresa is a family lifestyle photographer who is happy homeschooling her three children in the Christian classical education theory in the suburbs of Chicago. You can find her on her blog Tiaras & Tantrums or on Twitter as @tiarastantrums.