Tips for Helping Children Focus
Children live in the wonderous stage of life where everything is new and wonderful. At times, their abundance of energy and overwhelming curiosity combine to form a restlessness that makes focusing on schoolwork difficult. Here are a few practical tips that have worked for others to help their children focus.
1. Lead by example.
Can a child be expected to focus if their parent doesn't demonstrate the same self-discipline? Remember, school time is school time. Social media, phone calls, and other distractions can wait.
2. Use a dry-erase board.
List all the things that need to be completed in a day and allow the child to erase as they finish. This shows progress visually as well as showing clearly what is left to accomplish. A child who doesn't know what remains to be done might not focus as well on finishing.
3. Breaks and snacks.
Does your child have the fuel they need to stay focused? Do they need a small, healthy mid-morning snack? Maybe a break between subjects would help them transition and refocus more smoothly. You might even consider going for a short walk or having a brief play time to expend energy and refocus the mind.
4. Consequences, rewards, and consistency.
Consistent consequences and rewards can be tremendous incentives for a child to do their best. In everything, be consistent. Inconsistency produces a lack of focus just as much as it encourages a lack of self-discipline.
5. Discover the cause.
Is there something in particular keeping your child from focusing? Perhaps they aren't feeling well. Maybe they didn't sleep well the night before. It could even be that the child is experiencing worry or anxiety over their schoolwork. You might have a budding perfectionist on your hands who is being distracted by their own stress. Pray with your child, remind them of the importance of doing their best and working hard, but also remind them that they are loved, valued, and capable.
6. Examine your own expectations.
Ask yourself the question, "Is my child acting in a way that is unacceptable, or are my expectations unreasonable or incorrect?" Think of yourself at the same age and reconsider your expectations of your child. It might be you're expecting too much or even too little and need to reexamine your boundaries.
We hope these few hints might have inspired new ideas as you continue your homeschool journey. My Father's World is committed to helping families homeschool successfully. If you need help along the way, always feel free to contact us.