Thursday, March 15, 2007

Motivating a Teenager to Study

At the weekend I was at the house of friends and they were discussing at length their dilemma regarding their 15 year old grandson, Louis. A bright child, he is more interested in socialising with his friends, playing on the computer and playing golf (at which he is extremely good, and has been picked for his county team) then his schoolwork.

The extended family are all now worrying about how to help Louis get sufficient grades at school to be able to go on to university. They have even gone to the rather extreme length of promising him money to do well - a straight bribe!

I listened intently but didn't participate in the conversation, until I was asked my opinion. Unfortunately it wasn't a very helpful opinion. I pointed out that first of all, if Louis' parents were not actively encouraging his efforts at school and spending plenty of time talking with him about his studies and encouraging him to set goals, there is a limited amount of difference that the extended family can make. And secondly, I suggested that the child that it might be more effective to focus on is their 5-year-old grandson, Cameron, who is young enough to really absorb and be excited by the whole goal setting process when it comes to school.

If it is important to you to see your child succeeding academically, I urge you to start as early as you can in showing active interest in his schoolwork and teaching him to set goals for studying!

Happy Parenting,


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