Motivating Kids to Learn for Life

As a parent, we want to see our children grow. We provide all matter of experiences for them to learn to find out what it is in life they enjoy doing. We set up music lessons, we take him on playdates, we take them to camps, we introduce them to sports. We try to make learning fun. Our hope is to get them interested in learning and achieving far beyond what we may have done ourselves. The problem is trying to keep a child motivated and not give up on an activity that sometimes may become less than exciting.

Motivation Is the Key

Motivation is the key, even for ourselves. We need to figure out what motivates us to do something. If you’re one of those people who want to go for a run at five in the morning, you need to find the motivation to get up early in the morning to go for that run. Some people actually enjoy this type of thing. Others may choose to be part of a regular group where your motivation is not disappointing others in the group that rely on you. People will do what they either enjoy doing or they are motivated to do for whatever reason.

Play the Piano and Love It

Most of us love to listen to music, and almost every child nowadays dreams of becoming a star, whether it’s singing, playing an instrument in a rock band, or other forms of expressing ourselves. As a child, I always wished I’d had the opportunity to take piano lessons. But we didn’t have a piano at home and no opportunity to get one. My friends who were learning piano hated all the hours and hours of practice. But when they got older, they loved how amazed people were that they knew how to play. An experience for life!

What Do You Enjoy?

I took trombone from third grade all the way through tenth grade in school. I was almost always first or second chair in the band, the symphony orchestra, and I was part of a band where we simply performed at fairs and festivals, and especially in parades. I did not enjoy all of the boring hours of practicing scales and at one point I was actually put into private lessons. Can you say miserable? I did not do it for all those years because I enjoyed it. My motivation was that I was forced to by a parent. When I got to tenth grade, I found I could take up the guitar and piano, so other than doing my band, I dropped trombone and learned guitar and piano. I enjoyed it because I like to sing and I could create music on my own, in my room, and it was original.

Do Something That’s Fun

Sports or physical activity are beneficial for life. Many kids would rather sit in front of a TV, computer screen, or game console. We try to motivate our kids to participate. Some kids are naturally drawn to it. But that’s not for all kids. The idea behind sports should be that they enjoy doing something that’s fun. If they’re on a winning team, they take pride in doing an activity. But if they’re on a losing team, interest does not stay focused long. Sports and activities help create

health for life. Maybe that’s the motivation. Show them relatives or others who may be obese and don’t exercise. Show the child that if they do these things on a regular basis, choosing the activities they enjoy, then they will stay fit. Set an example. Once you get motivated, your motivation may rub off on them.

Do Things With Your Child

If you want a child to become interested in the sciences, get books and do scientific experiments with them. I homeschooled my nephew and we came up with some awesome projects. We also went to every museum that has an activity that centered around science. He enjoyed that subject so much. If you visit the website, Simply Sweet, they have an article where they give you many ideas of fun, educational things you can do with your child during the summer. The child will benefit—and so will you. When I homeschooled my nephew, I remembered things that I had forgotten.

This can be applied to history, cooking, auto and home repair, and any other area. My nephew can do so many things independently because I tried to motivate him to try new things continually. We even created our own cooking video blog when he was ten. The point is that education should be a lifelong, enjoyable journey. Please visit the New York City Department of Education for their ideas of things to do at all ages.

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