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  • How to Raise a Kid who Loves to Learn

    Help your kids to enjoy learning with these tips, plus how to know if you're being too pushy.
    by Monika Susan Fabia .
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    Paula Aquino, a teacher at the Multiple Intelligence International School, agrees, “Parents should build on their child’s self-esteem. They should show a positive attitude towards learning. Even at the preschool age, it’s important for parents to communicate to their child that it’s okay to make mistakes for as long as he did his best (and even if he didn’t get the highest grade or honor).”

    Finding the right balance
    Ilao suggests five things you can do with your child in order to keep his thirst for learning alive and well:

    1. Make time for downtime.
    “It is important for you to give your child time to unwind after school so as not to get him stressed. Playing or simple activities such as listening to soothing music or observing nature can make all the difference. Time for relaxation will make your child feel that he is not being deprived of other things he would like to do. He will not resent the idea of “work” when he realizes this.”

    2. Set a reasonable and workable schedule for you and your child.
    “Create a schedule that is convenient not only for your child, but also for you. Make sure to include rest time in the schedule so as not to overwork him. Don’t try to do everything all at once.” The more you push him to complete all the tasks, the less he will enjoy and therefore, the less he will learn.

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    3. Go beyond books.
    “Try to integrate his lessons with your daily routine at home or in other venues.” For example, for math skills focused on adding and subtracting, you can have him help you prepare ingredients for cooking in the kitchen. You can also count cars while stuck in traffic. “Count all the blue cars that you see. Then, count all the red cars. And then try to count how many blue and red cars you see all in all!” The more creative your ways are, the more enjoyable it will be for your child.

    4. Implement positive reinforcement.
    “Sometimes, it helps to reward your child to increase his motivation and interest towards learning. While material rewards seem like the best reinforcement, parents can make the reward something they can experience together with their child.” For example, a biking or camping adventure in exchange for your child’s hard work can be a good family bonding experience.  

    5. Let your child shine on his own.
    “While it definitely helps to have you guide him in every step of his activity, it is also important for parents to take a step back and to simply watch your child do things on his own. This will allow him to develop independence and confidence in doing his work. When he feels that you trust him to accomplish his work on his own, he becomes proud of his work - this encourages him to learn more.”

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