Motivation to take learning back home.

Author – Vaishnavi Deepak

Learning is an ongoing process. It is something that follows its master everywhere. Whether it is homework, preparing for an assignment or studying for an exam, it is not a practice that is limited to confined spaces.

The existing education system has a conventional view towards learning, more like a horse’s blinker. Restricting learning to the four walls of a classroom is a common mistake that teachers and parents make while nurturing students and children who are born learners. While the classroom is the primary source of instruction, it is vital that – intellectual, social and academic growth extend outside the walls of the classroom.

The concept of ‘home assignments’ was first thought of, to inculcate the discipline of putting time into one’s craft in young children. However, today it is a stale concept as it has been veiled as a punishment and hence, has lost its primary goal.

There is a pressing need to re-evaluate ‘outside-the-classroom’ learning practices and find a secret potion to motivate young talented students to take up these learning practices.

We, at ThinkTac, have you covered as we present to you, the top three tricks that will help today’s academicians and parents master the art of ensuring learning is taken back home.

Here goes:

  • Make efforts to create a reading environment:

Every space that students surround themselves with, should be conducive to learning. And reading is a habit that is not time or space-bound.

Read to your child frequently. Have your child read aloud. Create a family reading time/room where everyone focuses on reading for at least 20 minutes a day.

Fill your classroom and home with reading materials (novels, posters, newspapers, magazines, etc.) to create an atmosphere of reading, that will indicate the importance of reading to your child (or students).

Make sure the demarcated area is quiet, comfortable and free from distractions. Try to experiment with different study areas. 

  • Combine fun and learning at home:

Most children look forward to returning home from school,  as it allows them to indulge in activities that help them unwind/relax. It would do the children a world of good if their recreational hobbies were integrated with academic ideas to help them grasp concepts better.

Think “science experiment” and you might have visions of a chemistry lab explosion. Fear not! You don’t have to turn your kitchen into a blast zone to teach science. There are plentiful DIY experiments and models on our website that can be done in the comfort of one’s home, yet making sure that they engage the learner’s grey cells.

You could also devise simple games that could be swapped for idle pastimes. Adapt the game for school-age children to cover anatomy, world government, foreign language, and history, etc. What you choose to teach with this game is only limited by your imagination.

  • Encourage conversations and active learning:

Conversations and interactions at home can help develop a positive attitude towards learning and build confidence in themselves as learners. 

Children who haven’t learned to listen carefully often have trouble following directions and paying attention in class. Children need active learning just as much as quiet learning.

Active learning involves asking and answering questions, solving problems and exploring interests. It can also take place when they play sports, spend time with friends, play a musical instrument or visit museums and bookstores.

To promote active learning, listen to their ideas and respond to them. Let them jump in with questions and opinions when you read or learn something new together. When this type of give-and-take at home is encouraged, it incentivizes them to take their academics back home.

Turning every day into a learning day may be too much, but it really isn’t, if you go about it the right way.  Do take note that not everything has to feel like a classroom lesson. Get young kids excited about discovering something new by using these tips and motivating them to take their learning back home, willingly and energetically.

As Simone Weil rightly said, “The joy of learning must be as indispensable in study as breathing is in running.”

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4 Essentials to Your Child’s Back-to-School Kit

A back-to-school kit is quintessential to your child’s rebound back into school life.

As young kids face the blues of making the transition from laid back vacations to routine academics, they need to be equipped with all the help they can get. Parents, on the other hand, have a separate challenge. This involves preparing their ward’s mindset alongside adapting to the change in their routine.

This is when having a prepped back to school kit comes in handy. A back to school kit is essentially a staple set of materials and mindsets that will be put to use immediately as the student gets out of the break and into school. Suggestions to hit the bull’s eye with the back to school kit are as following:

Essentials to the back-to-school Kit

1. Stock up on school supplies

Back to School Kit

unsplash-logoTim Gouw

The visual of freshly purchased notebooks, tightly wrapped in a brown sheet and labeled still spells out ‘Back-to-School’ to me!

Supplies entail all the stationery and knick-knacks that a student will require at school. These ensure that the student has no logistical hindrances in the beginning days. A way to up the excitement to get back to the routine could also be to accessorize supplies by themes, like the solar system, or seek out such design inspirations.

2. Revisit the Vacation

Vacation - Back to School

unsplash-logoVicko Mozara

It is always a good idea to have a roundup of how your kid spent their time in the break.

Assessing the activities’ they took part in, the hobbies that held a major chunk of their time, and the changes in their interests will help you, as a parent, approach the academic year better. You will know which extracurricular activity to sign them up for (which could also ease the vacation-lag). It will also help in identifying the areas of concern with the child’s lifestyle and attitude towards learning.

3. Stress on curiosity

Curiosity - Back to School

unsplash-logoJoseph Rosales

The most important weapon in any young learner’s arsenal, is the inquisitive attitude towards anything they learn.

As Walt Disney, famously said, “We keep moving forward, opening new doors, and doing new things, because we’re curious and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”

The initial days of an academic term are synonymous with lesser workload. This could be the right time to tap into your child’s will to learn and explore, thus setting stage for all the lessons that the curriculum will being them.

The TACtivities provided at ThinkTac are an ideal way of ensuring the same. They introduce new and engaging concepts in a manner that doesn’t compromise on the fun aspect of learning. It also employs the tactile and experiential learning experiences for your kid.

4. Play-time and down hours

Lego for Kids - Back to School

unsplash-logoHello I’m Nik

There was definitely one hard obstacle that I faced getting back to school every term. This was losing all my idle time to play and do the things that restored my energy. Be it- reading, watching television or socializing with friends.

Recreation is an indelible part of growing up. And, in the transformative time of getting back to school, kids tend to find a need for it more than ever. They feel the temptation to extend their designated play hours and engage in un-academic interests.

As parents, it is important to be mindful of the fact that the transition is always hard. This is an apt time to cut some slack for the children and allow them to dwell in their mirth till the demands of academic life pick up.

No back to school kit will ever be complete without some implied considerations- A healthy breakfast, a positive outlook, and a good night’s sleep. Ensure that your kids leave their anxiety and fears at home and march on to conquer another year of school.

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