Teachers cannot magically put all the information into a child’s head. Children need to know how to learn. From my research I have learnt that there are strategies that you can use to help your child to learn.
‘Learning to learn’ is the ability to pursue and persist in learning, to organise one’s own learning, including through effective management of time and information, both individually and in groups. This competence includes awareness of one’s learning process and needs, identifying available opportunities, and the ability to overcome obstacles in order to learn successfully. This competence means gaining, processing and assimilating new knowledge and skills as well as seeking and making use of guidance. Learning to learn engages learners to build on prior learning and life experiences in order to use and apply knowledge and skills in a variety of contexts: at home, at work, in education and training. Motivation and confidence are crucial to an individual’s competence.
Teach your child how to learn
Instilling a passion for learning, however, is one of the best gifts you can give kids. By teaching children to love learning, you teach them to be flexible, open-minded and adaptable. You help them become problem solvers and prepare them appropriately for anything by not preparing them for anything specific. Kids become more adept to deal with the challenges of an unpredictable, ever-changing world.
Praise your child for making an effort to learn and encourage him to employ effective study strategies. For example, when studying for a mathematics test, stress that actively doing math problems works better than passively glancing over notes. Focusing on effort and strategies places your child on a path toward competence. Read more here.
The best question parents can ask when faced with a grade, whether high or low, is: How are you going to use this experience to be better next time? This technique works particularly well for anxious and overly perfectionist kids, because they can get stuck in a negative feedback loop, obsessing wholly on the numbers and grades. Helping them shift their focus back to the process can alleviate that anxiety, particularly when we help them prioritize the aspects of learning they can control,
We may take it for granted that success requires hard work and overcoming of obstacles but this is not necessarily obvious to children. If you take time to explain your experience of a learning curve it will help them connect hard work with future rewards.
Praise effort more than talent
Stanford University’s Carol Dweck Ph.D., a pioneering researcher in the field of motivation and author of the immensely enlightening book Mindset, reveals that praising kids for effort, rather than their natural abilities makes them more willing to take on challenges. So praise your child for making an effort to learn and encourage him to employ effective study strategies. For example, when studying for a mathematics test, stress that actively doing math problems works better than passively glancing over notes. Focusing on effort and strategies places your child on a path toward competence.