Encouraging kids to study isn’t always (if ever!) easy. Often, a child’s natural curiosity extends to everything except their homework. As such, it can be tricky for parents and caregivers to encourage kids to revise, complete homework, and take on extracurricular learning.
Fortunately, there are ways to hack the homework-averse mind! Even if studying doesn’t engage your child immediately, we know that all kids love to learn through exploration and experimentation. So let’s use these methods to make studying fun for kids and easier on their grown-ups!
👉 Want to read up? 7 Ways to Integrate Parental Involvement in Education
Knowledge is powerful
Studying can be hard work. Particularly for younger children and particularly when the subject is not their favourite or one they have a natural ability in. However, the rewards of studying are numerous, and the joy and self-discovery kids can find through their learning shouldn’t be underestimated. So, even if it is hard work, we have to prioritise our children’s learning journey!
It’s important to remind little ones that studying doesn’t have to be boring! And it certainly should never be given as a punishment, because this negatively skews a child's perception of the activity. Instead, it should be viewed as a source of pleasure, empowerment, and self-improvement.
Furthermore, what we might not always consider is that learning can take many different forms. Activities like reading, visiting museums and galleries, exploring different cuisines at restaurants, and travelling are sometimes viewed exclusively as leisure pursuits… but kids can actually learn a lot from these fun activities!
With that in mind, let’s explore 10 handy ways in which we can encourage our kids to study…
10 ways parents can encourage kids to study
1. Speak positively about studying
Share the positive aspects that studying has brought to your life, emphasising that learning is a journey and one that you are still enjoying! Talk to your child about your education, career and how you came to choose your profession and hobbies. Discuss how daily practice honed your skills, whether it's drawing, skating, or cooking. Highlight how you see opportunities to learn every day and the satisfaction this brings you. Children model so much of their behaviour on the grown-ups in their life, so be sure to set a good example!
2. Enjoy the process, not just the result
Instead of praising good grades and criticising poor ones, focus on the effort and the process involved in studying. Acknowledge and praise your child when they have been studying to positively reinforce the desired behaviour. They’ll soon realise that you value their pursuit of knowledge and the effort they apply to gaining it, rather than the end result. Scores on a maths test are soon forgotten, a love for learning can last a lifetime.
3. Stay organised
Too much clutter can confuse the mind. Teach your child to organise their study environment and make it a place they are excited to use. Choose well-lit, clean spaces that are free from excessive noise and decorated to your child’s taste. Giving your child responsibility for this space will lead to a sense of ownership — and they’ll feel excited to spend time there.
4. Establish a study routine
Create specific times for focused study sessions. For example, complete homework tasks at the same time every day to cement this habit. The more often you repeat this routine, the more effective it becomes!
5. Read books and visit galleries
Reading is an excellent way to spark imagination, discover new ideas, expand vocabulary, and develop writing skills. Encourage this habit so that your child can learn whilst enjoying a story. Visiting galleries and exhibitions is excellent for intellectual and cultural enrichment, making them a great option for days out.
6. Encourage independent study
It's important for children to understand that studying and doing homework are their responsibility, not their parents'. If parents always supervise homework, the child may transfer the responsibility to them. Demonstrate to your child that you can provide guidance if they’re struggling, but they should see their homework and study time as an exciting challenge and a moment in which they can shine.
7. Discuss new knowledge
Make time to discuss with your child what they learned at school. This will help them remember their lessons and also demonstrate that you genuinely care about their day and learning journey… they might just teach you a thing or two!
8. Don't answer for your child
If your child is struggling with a particular task, don’t immediately solve the problem for them. Take advantage of situations like these to demonstrate how mistakes can facilitate learning. If your child doesn't know something, you can guide them to research elsewhere or write down their question for the teacher.
9. Play together!
How about organising tournaments of word games, crossword puzzles, and competitive quizzes? These activities are not only fun but also boost logical thinking, spelling, and numeracy (a child never pays closer attention than when they’re counting up a winning score)! The more enjoyable learning is, the more effective it will be.
10. Diversify your studies
Homework tasks are mandatory and often daily. However, learning goes far beyond these tasks. Inspire your child to learn new things in different fields to equip them with diverse knowledge and instil an appreciation for learning. Whether it's dancing, meditating, singing, playing the guitar, solving equations, or enjoying arts and crafts, there’s so much to learn and so much fun to be had learning it!
Extra tip: enhance learning with arts and crafts
Arts and crafts are an especially effective way to make learning fun for kids. Crafting enhances cognitive development, problem-solving skills, and imaginative thinking.
At toucanBox, we understand the power of creativity in education. Our carefully curated selection of arts and crafts kits are designed to stimulate young minds, encouraging kids to explore their creativity while learning all about a range of subjects. Why not check out our Brain Booster craft collection in our shop to find your child’s next educational activity?
From science experiments to art projects, our Brain Boosters offer a wide range of options to complement your child's educational journey. These hands-on activities infuse traditional study methods with heaps of practical crafting fun.
Visit our shop to discover the thrilling world of arts and crafts, and enhance your child's learning experience today. Or join our subscription craft club to get monthly doses of educational fun delivered through your letterbox!
Together, we can craft a world where every child loves to learn!
The Sandbox Team, in collaboration with toucanBox