|

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Success for an Eight-Grader

Education Expert Advice from Peggy Gisler, Ed.S. and Marge Eberts, Ed.S.

Q: My eighth-grader is very bright but lacks the motivation to do her best. She could make all Bs or better with very little effort. How do you motivate kids?

A: Parents frequently offer rewards, limit privileges, nag, or talk about the advantages of doing well in school in order to motivate their children. For some, these approaches do work, and in time the children may even get in the habit of trying to do their best at school.

Nevertheless, the very best motivation is that which comes from within, when a child tries to do well in school because it meets some personal need. It could be as simple as making the honor roll, pleasing a favorite teacher, preparing for college or a career, or doing as well as good friends.

Because your daughter is bright, visits to college campuses that include official tours and an explanation of admission requirements could motivate her to try harder at school. Also, learning more about what is needed for certain careers could be motivational.

There is also the possibility that your child needs more of a challenge. She should be taking a demanding curriculum.

Another excellent way to motivate children to do their best is by modeling this behavior. If your daughter sees that you try to do your best, she may try to follow your lead.

When children are underachieving, it is always wise to investigate whether any academic weaknesses are responsible for the problem. Even the brightest children can have certain problems that limit how well they do in school.

For many children, entering high school can be the magic experience that inspires them to do well in school. Hopefully, your daughter will soon have a change in attitude.

More on: Expert Advice

Peggy Gisler and Marge Eberts are experienced teachers who have more than 60 educational publications to their credit. They began writing books together in 1979. Careers for Bookworms was a Book-of-the-Month Club paperback selection, and Pancakes, Crackers, and Pizza received recognition from the Children's Reading Roundtable. Gisler and Eberts taught in classrooms from kindergarten through graduate school. Both have been supervisors at the Butler University Reading Center.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

highlights

Join BIC on our mission to save handwriting and Fight For Your Write! Writing helps kids become better readers, boosts their confidence and sparks their creativity. Visit BICFightForYourWrite.com to sign our petition to save handwriting!

7 Fun Driveway and Sidewalk Games for Kids
Looking for classic outdoor games kids can play in the driveway or on the sidewalk, just like the good ol' days? From hopscotch to bubble-blowing contests, there's something for all ages!

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

Best Sun Safety Practices for Babies
Follow these sun safety practices for babies to ensure your little one stays safe on the beach and on sunny days all year long.