A lot of teenagers hate school. Or claim that they don’t hate school… they only hate the teachers, the exams, the homework and getting up early in the morning!
Teenagers, by definition, have an ongoing war between their head and their heart; they are moody, hormonal and confused about life (though mostly they think they know everything!); they have to deal with their bodies that are changing physically and mentally; and they have to deal with peer pressure.
The life of a teenager can be really difficult at times.
If you want to or feel the need to improve your teenager’s attitude towards learning and you want to help him/her to develop a good school attitude you need to keep all of the above in mind.
Here are 5 tips to help you in your quest for a school-loving teenager:
Be a role model –
set a good example
Teenagers learn more by observation than any other way. You won’t get them to admit to this and it will always be a long-term project but eventually it will pay off.
Don’t stay off work unless you have a valid reason to do so; don’t bad-mouth your boss/colleagues/conditions at your workplace at home. If you harbour a bad attitude towards your boss or workplace you inadvertently teach your teenager to do the same.
Set clear rules about communication and behaviour
Set household rules about what is acceptable and what is not.
Praise your teenager when praise is due. It is said, ‘What you praise, you increase.’ And, ‘Praise, like sunlight, helps all things to grow.’
Talking about a fun thing that happened in the school day will remind your teen that school isn’t as bad as he/she sometimes makes it out to be.
Set consequences for inappropriate comments and unacceptable behaviour. Make it simple but effective. Act on it; don’t let it slip as that will create a precedent and it will affect the whole process of improving your teenager’s attitude towards learning.
Think back to when you were a teenager
One moment you felt that the world was falling apart around you; the next you were on top of the world…
It will stand you in good stead to remember that at times your teenager will display fairly mature behaviour while at other times their behaviour will be inconsistent or instinctive.
A teenager’s brain is still ‘under construction’ – as a parent you need to harbour enough understanding for the process of growing up.
Brain-storm problem-solving techniques together
Establish a relationship with your teenager where he/she can freely talk to you when something is bothering them.
Listen attentively, thereafter have a discussion about how the situation can or should be handled, how it can be changed for the better and how to deal with it emotionally.
Remind your teenager that whilst at school they are already working towards:
- Having a career, not just a job
- Owning their own house
- Being successful, not average