One amazing thing that humans can do that most of us take advantage of is learning. Learning is an incredible way to understand the different aspects of life and to broaden our knowledge on a number of topics. While school can generally cause students to dislike learning, there are ways to help your child develop a love for learning.
As a parent, you want your child to be curious and smart, you want them to do well in school and in life, and you want them to want to know more about the world around them. While it is very unlikely that you will be able to teach your child everything they want to know, you certainly can encourage them to continue learning and discovering on their own.
At East Valley Christian School in San Jose, we understand the power of learning and want each and every one of our students to excel academically and spiritually. While we do what we can to make classes fun and learning interesting for students, we believe that parents play a major role in helping their children develop a love for learning.
In this blog, we are going to talk about some of the ways that you can help encourage your children to enjoy learning and allow them to develop a love for it. Read on to learn more and be sure to contact us for more information.
Entertain Their Curiosities
When your child shows curiosity in something, encourage them to learn about it. Take them to the library to pick up books about the topic, talk about what they learn and allow them to explain it to you, let them explore their curiosities and learn as much as they can. By entertaining their curiosities and encouraging them to learn more about these topics, they will begin to love learning and the fact that they can learn about their interests. This will help them develop that love for learning and show them that learning can be done with any topic.
Fill Your Home With Books
An article from Parents mentions that Harvard University found that children who have consistent access to books have a higher motivation to read. And a study done by the U.S. Department of Education found that the most proficient readers were kids who lived in homes that contained many different reading materials including magazines, newspapers, books, and encyclopedias.
When you fill your home with books, you are giving your child endless options to learn something new and develop a love for reading, which can lead to a love for learning. When you give your child the opportunity to read and they begin to love reading, they will be able to learn anything. There are millions of books out there covering every topic possible. Your child will be able to find something that interests them. Fill your home with books, read with your child, and get them a library card.
Encourage Them to Teach
Once you are able to teach something you have learned, you know that you truly understand it. When your child shows interest in something, encourage them to learn about it and once they do, teach you about the topic. Your child will love being able to teach you something new and being able to talk about a topic that they are interested in.
After your child comes home from school, while cooking dinner together or relaxing on the porch, ask them to teach you one thing they learned about in school. While your child may not be interested in every topic they learned about in school, there will likely be one thing that caught their attention during the school day. Take turns sharing something you each learned that day.
Show Them Learning Is Lifelong
Learning is something that happens in every stage of life. If you show your child that you are still learning and enjoy learning, they will realize that this is not something that only happens in school. When you show your child that learning happens in everyday situations and can continue to happen long after school is over, they will be more likely to want to learn on their own and keep discovering new things as they grow older. Once school ends, many people simply stop trying to learn new things, but this should never be the case. There are so many things to learn and learning is a lifelong endeavor. When your child realizes this, they will be more likely to make learning a priority in their life and develop a love for it.
Let Them Play
While playing may not seem like an opportunity to learn, it is just the opposite. Playing allows kids to explore different topics, develop new curiosities, and learn about what interests them. While schools generally focus on teaching with textbooks, the classes that allow students to work on cool projects or go on fun adventures are the ones that are most effective in teaching kids. The same goes for playing. When children can have fun exploring their interests, they are more likely to develop a love for learning and see the fun in it. If your child is playing with dinosaurs, ask them if they want to learn more about the dinosaurs they have and get them a book on the topic. Pretty soon they will be able to play with all of their toys and tell you the names, fun facts, and more about the dinosaurs. Play is an important part of learning that many parents may forget about from time to time.
When your child is young, they go through a phase where they ask you a million questions a day. While it may be annoying for you to have to answer all of those questions every day, it is important that you do. These questions come from a place of curiosity and your child wanting to learn more about the world around them. Answer each question as best you can and if you are unsure of the answer, figure it out together. Learning something new with your child not only shows them that people are always learning new things, but it can also make them love learning because it is something that you do with them. Learning together can be a fun bonding experience and put you and your child on a fun adventure. Plus, your child might ask some really great questions that you may have never thought about yourself and you may learn something extremely interesting.
Know When to Back Off
In the Parents article, it is mentioned that the children who were the most motivated had parents who did not micromanage or pressure their children. While it may be tempting to jump in and tell your child they are doing something wrong and help them, this does not help them learn and does not motivate them to learn. Instead of jumping in and trying to help your child, let them figure it out on their own. When your child is able to overcome these challenges, they will feel more competent, which will help them enjoy learning and want to learn more.
By backing off and allowing your child to be a problem solver, you are allowing them to develop the skills needed, which makes them feel as though they are better at something. When you feel like you are good at something, you are more likely to enjoy the topic. If your child feels like they are good at problem-solving and learning, they are more likely to continue to do it.
Don’t Offer Rewards
While it may seem like a good idea to reward your child for completing their homework or finishing a book, this can actually backfire and take away the fun in learning. Your child will be more focused on the prize than the activity. Even if your child used to enjoy reading, they will begin to focus more on the prize and less of the fun of reading their book if you offer a prize for every book they finish. Children learn best when they are acting on their natural curiosities rather than to achieve a reward. Kids are curious by nature and want to learn; rewards can undermine the fun they find in this learning. While some parents can offer rewards and make them work well for their children, they may have the opposite effect.
Let Them Learn About Anything
One easy way to get your child to hate learning is by telling them what they can and cannot learn about. Learning can happen with any topic. If your child wants to learn more about sports, let them. If they want to learn about bugs, let them. At this point in their life, you simply want to help them develop a love for learning. Eventually, they will begin to learn more about the topics that they need for school. But by allowing them to develop a love for learning, you are helping them become lifelong learners and want to learn more and more. Let them learn about what interests them, as they grow older, their interests will change and they will want to learn even more.
These are a few of the many tips we have for helping your child develop a love for learning! By following these tips, you can help stimulate your child’s curiosity and make them want to learn more about the world around them. You may even learn a thing or two yourself!
If you are looking for a new school for your child or starting to plan on what preschool your kiddo will attend, be sure to check out East Valley Christian School. Check out our application timeline and what is required for admissions. Contact us today to learn more about our school in the San Jose area. And remember, learning is lifelong!