If your son or daughter has a negative perspective on schooling it can make everything hard: getting them out of bed in the morning through to getting them to do some homework in the afternoon – the simplest tasks can become serious issues.
Our attitude will always determine how we approach things, so especially when we are dealing with something as important as education it is crucial to get right. A poor attitude towards school can result in a downward spiral that needs to be prevented as early as possible.
Here are 5 steps you can take to improve your child’s attitude:
1. Attempt to identify the root of the problem.
This may be much easier said than done, but this should be the first step you take – try to work out why your child has developed a negative attitude in the first place. In my experience it is usually one of three things:
- Falling behind in class
This was me in early High School. I really struggled in maths and consequentially I developed a really salty attitude towards the subject – I refused to do homework and eventually stopped going to the class altogether. It was only when my parents got me a tutor to catch up with my class that my attitude changed.
- Differences with peers
If there is conflict between your child and their friends, or they feel isolated/lonely at school this can be a great source of resentment for school.
- Conflicting learning style to teacher
If your child doesn’t like their teacher, they can quickly develop a poor attitude to school. They almost enjoy being disengaged because they feel it is ‘sticking it’ to their teacher.
If you can work out what the problem is, it will make overcoming that attitude much easier.
2. Increase their involvement in school based extra-curricular activities.
Most schools offer a ton of extra-curricular activities that can be really easy to get involved in. They are great for students because they usually feature small groups and allow student’s unique skills to shine through. It could be band or sport or debating or chess – anything that your child is remotely interested in; get them involved.
3. Encourage their in-school social life.
Take an active role in their social life by taking the time to meet their friends. Have them over for dinner and build relationships with them. Caring about your children’s friends is a great way of showing your kids you really care about them.
4. Organise a tutor as a mentor.
Back to my first point, it was the support of a private home tutor that changed my bad attitude in early high school. All our tutors are hand-selected for their ability to be incredible role-models, so will be able to work one-on-one with your child and make a real difference not just in their marks, but in their level of confidence and overall attitude.
Alchemy supports students in primary and high school in all subjects but with a strong emphasis in english tutoring and maths tutoring. Learn more and book your first lesson with an Alchemy tutor here.
5. Communicate with the school.
Your child’s teacher may notice things that you don’t so it can’t hurt to talk to them. While this is getting harder as classes get fuller every year, your child’s teacher should still be able to identify significant changes in their personality, application and attitude.
These are 5 seemingly simple steps – but obviously every child is unique, and what will work for one won’t always work for another. Hopefully these are some ideas to get the conversation happening and ultimately make everyone’s lives much easier!