It’s that time of year when kids head back to school; their new outfits are ready, the excitement in the air is palpable and summer boredom is a thing of the past. Everything may not be smooth sailing, however, in terms of concentration. If your child is having a hard time focusing in school, follow these easy tips to make their school days more exciting and instill a love of learning.
1. Activity Is Important
Getting out extra energy could be just the thing your child needs. Ask your child if he or she wants to try a particular sport and sign them up for the one they choose. If your child is hesitant or resistant to join a sport’s team, make a morning walk part of your everyday routine. Getting out their extra energy can get rid of the wiggles and make them more inclined to pay attention in class.
2. Make It Personal
Start the school year off with personalized gifts that they can take with them to school. A new backpack or a lunchbox with their initials on it that they can show off to their friends can be the perfect thing to give them an extra boost of confidence and make them happy to leave the house. Being excited to go to school is a step in the right direction and can help change your child’s potentially negative view on going to class.
3. Provide an Incentive
Incentivize your child to pay attention. For completed homework, a good grade on an in-class quiz, or praise from a teacher, take them to dinner at a restaurant of their choosing to celebrate. This won’t necessarily work for every occasion, but providing special surprise treats like this can go a long way in encouraging your child.
4. Get Organized
If your child is easily overwhelmed, spend some time putting together to-do lists and daily work plans. This will help reinforce organization and teach your child an early lesson about prioritization. Little ones have relatively short attention spans, and creating a plan that’s easy to follow may help them get back on track more quickly.
5. Turn Off Technology
Technology can be a horrible distraction for kids. We live in a world of connectivity and constant stimulation. Make rules about technology use and stick to them. Some parents prefer their children to have a cell phone with them at school in case of emergency. If that’s the case for you, install an app to track and control the usage of non-essential features on the phone. During homework time, put technology on the backburner. Unless Internet research is required, restrict use of the television, phone, and computer. You can even set up software that blocks use of certain websites to make sure the rules aren’t broken when you’re not around to enforce them.
6. Set an Example with Your Own Homework
You may not have schoolwork to complete, but you can use homework time to catch up on bills, sort through important paperwork, or work on projects you may have brought home from the office. Your children will learn through your discipline, distractions will be kept to a minimum, and you’ll be ready to provide help should your son or daughter have homework questions.
7. Designate Space
Create a space in your home that’s dedicated only to homework or reading. Make this space a distraction-free area, and help your kids form a habit of completing all their assignments in this space. Find out the things that help your child study. Is it a completely quiet atmosphere? Or would a small speaker playing light instrumental music increase concentration? Design the area around your child’s needs, and watch his or her productivity skyrocket.
8. Provide Breaks
Breaks are very important. Your child may get frustrated if he or she is forced to sit with difficult work. Integrate quick brain breaks in which your child can relax, grab some water, or have a snack. A timer can be very helpful, and will help you avoid the incessant question during study hours: “Is it break time yet?”
9. Utilize Interest
If your child is interested in an extracurricular activity, don’t ignore it. While it may seem counterproductive to add another thing to the to-do list, letting them and encouraging them to participate in an outside activity may help increase focus. As it will be something of their choosing, they will be more inclined to pay attention, and learn focusing skills that will naturally blend into their school life.
Many children struggle to pay attention in school, but there are various techniques parents can use to encourage better attention habits. Try these tips and help your child improve their focus.
How do you help your kids stay focused in school?
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