Right now, things are a bit complicated, which means we have to go the extra mile for the kids. Many schools aren’t going to be resuming in the fall as they normally would be due to the coronavirus pandemic. Those schools that will be taking place in person have watched their enrollment decrease as many parents take to registering their children with online schools or homeschooling. Although these methods are great for many kids, it is often hard to keep kids motivated. These ten ideas will help get you in the swing of things, so keeping kids engaged will be easier than ever.
1. Routine Chart
There’s no doubt about it, most kids thrive when it comes to a routine. That is why creating a routine chart can definitely help to keep everyone motivated as they work. Your chart should include daily activities including homework and other important tasks like chores, mealtimes, and breaks for resting and entertainment. One of the best charts to invest in is a chart that can be ticked off as kids go. This helps to make the daily objectives seem less intimidating. You might also take some time to consider rewards for completing objectives. With a little incentive to work with, most kids are more than happy to get their work done. Thus, you won’t have to battle with a lack of motivation as often as you might think.
2. Incentive Box
If incentives are on your radar, then an incentive box is one of the greatest ways to go. For starters, you might consider decorating the box to add to the fun. You can customize a box for each child, or simply create one that all of the kids can choose from. Once you get your box up and running, you need to pick items that the kids will actually want. Junk food, especially in a home that doesn’t allow it often, is usually a big deal for kids. You might also find little surprises like stickers, mystery boxes, and more. Many of these items can be found for a dollar or two, so you won’t have to break your budget. Make sure your incentive program is fair though, so kids won’t feel discouraged after working for long periods of time.
3. Switch Things Up
Doing the same thing every single day can be a bit of a bore for people of all ages. When kids begin to feel bored then their motivation usually takes a dive and you’ll find your kids are bouncing off the walls instead of doing the schoolwork you need them to do. In times like these, when kids are largely cooped up anyway, this is a lot easier to happen. So, you’ll want to look into switching things up when it comes to classwork and other tasks. For starters, you might consider making chores a little different each day or begin the day with something fun instead of your regular routine. If your kids are doing online classes, then this might be a bit harder to do. Instead, try to make homework a little sporadic for them. If you’re homeschooling though, by all means, switch things up. Leave a subject out one day, begin with something new each day, or take one of your lessons outdoors. This will certainly help to keep kids on their toes.
Kids have a ton of energy and having them cooped up doing any kind of work is going to stifle them a bit. So, instead of getting frustrated that they can’t sit still, you might consider putting them to work while moving around. For instance, they can do five jumping jacks in between math equations, run a lap around the yard while reciting a poem, or even do yoga in between lessons. The way you have kids exercise is up to you but remember it can be a very powerful tool when it comes to keeping your child focused and motivated.
5. Make it a Game
When schoolwork begins to feel like too much or the kids need a refresher, then feel free to turn the lessons into a game. There are lots of tips on how to do this online, which will make your life a whole lot easier. However, if you don’t have the time to do the research, then simply transform a task into a relay race of sorts, add fun noises, use pieces to transform a task into a board game, and so on. There is inspiration all around, including the things that your children are interested in. You can even take to apps to help you out. There are so many apps that use games to teach, so if you don’t have a specific assignment in line, use a game to get the lesson across.
6. Be Positive
At times, it might be hard to muster up a single ounce of positivity when it comes to schooling kids on a bad day. You don’t have to be all sunshine all of the time when you’re working with kids. However, you do need to keep a positive light on things. For instance, when it comes to schoolwork, don’t nag. Kids will be annoyed by it and you’ll get frustrated doing it. You should also never use putdowns when working with your children. This can resonate with them well into adulthood which might hinder them when they’re trying to reach their goals. When you work with children, try to use positive words and hopeful phrases, even if you’re not feeling it, your words will stick with them.
7. Add Relevancy
Kids can come up with a hundred questions at the drop of a hat, which makes teaching fun, spontaneous, and sometimes frustrating. However, when it comes to teaching, you need to be able to add some relevancy to life into your lessons. Otherwise, children, especially teenagers, aren’t going to want to deal with the lesson. If you’re not sure why something is relevant, then the internet will easily be able to steer you in the right direction. You never know, you might actually learn something remarkable when it comes to adopting this motto for your lessons. Even if you don’t, your kids will be more apt to learn when they understand why they have to learn the lessons.
8. Consider Environment
When it comes down to teaching, your child’s environment can have a whole lot to do with how they learn. Instead of teaching in a bland room, try to spice things up with posters or print outs that will make your home look and feel more like a classroom. Another thing to consider is the number of distractions in the home. Even if something doesn’t seem like a distraction, it might subconsciously be one. So, make sure you take the time to turn off the television during this time, cease chores, and simply allow kids to concentrate on whatever they want to concentrate on. You might find that this makes kids feel motivated and inspired to do their best.
9. Embrace Consequences
As a parent, you can’t burden all of your child’s responsibilities. This is especially true when it comes to older children. If you find yourself helicopter parenting during the school year, then you might take a couple of steps back. Doing this can actually cause your child to lose motivation, especially since they rely on you to help them meet their challenges. Instead of trying to keep your child on track constantly, allow them to learn that there are consequences when you don’t keep up with your work. It might harm their grade in the long run, but it is a lesson that sometimes just has to be learned.
10. Group Activity
Kids are used to going to school with their peers. So, just seeing classmates on the school’s group chat might feel weird to them. They might also lose motivation due to this. So, instead of leaving kids to work on their own, you might group together for school periods with the whole family. When your child is meant to be learning on their own, you can have everyone sit down together to discuss ideas, what they are learning, and to voice any concerns they might have. You’d be surprised by how much this can help, even if kids are not getting to socialize with their peers.
It isn’t going to be easy to get your children on task if they’re used to being in school. However, you don’t have to let the new situation stress you out. These ten tips will help keep your kids motivated, so you can easily get them on track and prepare them to deal with the new normal.