Keep Your Teen Motivated To Learn!
- 2005 25 Aug
His eyes glaze over. He starts to tap his fingers on the table. "Are we done yet?" he asks desperately.
If you homeschool a teenager, you will surely hear the anguished cry, "Are we done yet? It's only natural for high school students to become restless, even in their chosen learning environment. Usually, there is no cause for concern.
However, if you see patterns of negative behavior emerging, it may be time to make a change. Often homeschooled teenagers will respond well to one or more of these ideas:
- Ask your teenager to write down his/her goals, and then sit down together to discuss the best path to take. If college is a short-term goal, start touring early to motivate and inspire.
- Let him/her choose the study time and environment, but include some variation now and then. When the weather allows, head outside.
- Mix reading with projects, experiments, and crafts; and illustrate math with art, movement, and music.
- Replace some of your tests with discussions to improve interpersonal skills and public speaking.
- Use strategy-oriented board games to promote logical thinking and memory, as they offer a welcome change of pace.
- Provide encouragement and structure in your homeschool, so that your teenager senses progress.
- Join local homeschooling support groups for activity ideas and companionship.
- Find a neighbor or grandparent, local musician or business executive who might like to act as a mentor for your teenager.
- Take field trips when you sense your teenager's motivation level is down. Explore his/her stated career choices.
- Select work and volunteer experiences to enhance lessons.
- Emphasize your child's strengths and learning style. Public schools usually focus on linguistic and logical-mathematical intelligences only, but you can create a classroom that fosters kinesthetic, visual, or environmental skills if you so choose.
With a little creativity and the right resources, you can help your teenager rediscover his/her love of learning.
*This article first published August 25, 2005.
This article originally appeared in Homeschool.com's eNewsletter, which is available for free at: www.Homeschool.com/subscribe