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Motivating your child to learn

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Updated: 4/18/2007 7:12 am
One of the simplest ways to encourage learning is by answering your child's questions. Children are curious. They want to know everything about the world around them. Give them a real answer. If you don't actually know why the sky is blue, don't just say 'because God made it that way.' Say, 'let's look it up together.' When you show an interest in learning, it's bound to motivate your child. Probably the single most important step you can take is urging your child to read. Buy him or her any books that are appropriate, even comic books. Take your kids on trips, where they can see the things they've read about come to life: rivers, canyons, forests, and deserts. Discuss what you're seeing as you drive along. Visiting historical sites can make history a real experience, not just boring dates from a textbook. You can even find educational value in a simple trip to the grocery store. Have your children help you figure out how much two pounds of carrots might cost, and other related tasks. Finally, always praise your children for what they learn. Small rewards are okay, as long as they don't become the child's only motivation for the behavior. Always emphasize that learning is its own reward.
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