Children tend to only want to do what they find interesting, even if their choices are not helpful to their goals. Of course, some choices do help, especially when involving sports, competition, or skill development. One does not need help in motivating a child to do a preferred hobby, instead they need to encourage practical occupations, like homework and chess. The beauty of education is that it can be changed, catered, and still produce fruits in the students. It is like you are planning a trip from Toronto to Los Angeles, giving the driver freedom to choose.
Using the example above, the driver may choose a route based on time duration, distance travelled, or preferred sites (to see) along the way. If one hundred drivers (are given the same terminal destination) they will show plurality in their choices. The first may be short on money, seeking to arrive as fast as possible and take another job. Another may want to make a pitstop part way, to visit a friend that they haven’t seen in many years. Another way is to take the backroad, taking as little highways as possible.
The goal of education is to guide students towards their best self. It is not what we think is best, it is up to the student, even if they cannot see it at first. It is our job to celebrate wins, letting students know that they are especially proficient (in a specific subject) and may seek a career in this field. However, we cannot help students unless we know what they want, even if their answers are not clear or consistent.
- Ask your child questions about their homework, seeing that they like and don’t like. If they are doing well in a subject, dont assume that they like it. Make sure to check for positive feedback, especially if they appear happier than normal.
- Connect their extracurriculars to their hobbies. If your child hates basketball, it is a waste of money, time, and effort. Instead ask what type of physical sports they find interesting, perhaps something they watch on TV. Sports are integral to Canadian learning, with several course credits (in health/sports) required for graduation. An active body leads to an active mind.
- Encourage friendships with peers that share the same passion, like programming Python and other code. Commonality breeds understanding, the linchpin of friendship. Like the opposite (negative friends, negative influence) positive social circles encourage positivity. Or as the saying goes, “like attracts like”.
- Get down to your child’s level and do the same activities as them. If you are experienced in a subject-like math-show academic support, as well as emotional encouragement. Show that you are interested in yourself, especially when working as a family. Make school work a “family affair” with all members taking interest and providing input.
- Show the connection between hard work and reward, especially in your own business life. Explain what your job is, and how you provide value to your consumers. Explain how principles can help them later in life, when they leave home and begin to earn an income of their own. Give children small jobs, establishing the connection between effort and payout.
Your child looks to you for example, make sure that you are as enthusiastic about their education as they are. Explain why education is important, not just in work but also in developing the self. Education doesn’t just provide financial benefit but it also provides value at every stage, building the leaders of tomorrow.