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The Secrets to Raising a Smarter Child
- By Inderbir Sandhu, Ph.D


How to Motivate Children to Achieve?

By Andrew Loh

All children have their own special way of doing things. All of them perform some tasks or assignments because they want to carry out them. In fact, they do them out of their self-initiative and due to an internal drive that tells them to do certain things. No one tells them what to do, neither their parents nor peers. An intense intrinsic motivation or deep urge helps them to do all these things. All children simply love to make their own choices, prefer doing some work to satisfy their choices and finally satisfy their ego with a thinking that they were able to achieve those goals. All these activities are always linked to self-generated motivation, and are self-driven until such a time, children do not want to carry on with those activities.

Sometimes, children also perform activities because parents and teachers instruct them to do so. Alternatively, they may also do activities just to please their parents. In other words, the motivation to do all these tasks emanate from a source that lies outside the children's mind. In exchange for the satisfactory completion of work, children will expect some forms for rewards from their parents. Unfortunately, children who are externally motivated by other sources always expect it to be supplied to them along with rewards.

Extrinsic motivation is always temporary. It cannot sustain for longer durations just because it relies on momentary rewards given at every instance of successful completion of a task. Not all children who do some activities out of extrinsic motivation may achieve the desired results. In other words, such children will not apply their minds while doing any work and whatever work they are just out of compulsion.

On the other hand, intrinsically motivated children do their work out of an internal desire and self-generated initiative. In fact, such work is always rewarding for them, and it sustains for a long duration. Children, who learn by self-driven motivation, are always productive and result oriented. An intrinsic motivation would help children perform better in their classroom and out of it. Both information storage and retrieval are superior among children who work with self-motivation. In addition, these children also work with unbridled joy and enthusiasm. Parents could do a lot to drive motivation among their children. They could provide numerous options while assisting children to boost intrinsic motivation.

All children who display a high level of internal motivation often display some prominent behavioral characters. Here are some of them:

Ounces of Persistence

Persistence is a great quality that will help a person to develop an ability to stay behind an assigned task for longer durations. However, young children may not have the ability to stay on a given task for a long time unlike adults who can pursue with any task for a sustained period. In spite of this weakness, some children are more involved with any task when compared to children who can stop working on a task just after stating it. Parents may teach the character of perseverance by offering their children tasks, those are intimidating and overwhelming. In fact, children tend to develop patience and perseverance after completing a series of easy tasks and assignments.

Options and Choices for Challenges

Options for choosing increasingly complicated challenges are a prominent attribute of motivation between children. Children who taste success in meeting a simple challenge will look forward to meet another challenge that is little tougher than the earlier one. A one-time incidence of achieving success would act as a precursor to boost internal motivation between children. In turn, this will lead to working on increasingly tougher challenges, and children would keep boosting motivational levels. On the contrary, children who lack motivation, often seek satisfaction by completing mundane, and easy tasks and assignments, and they may never get satisfaction from their success. Children who lack proper motivational levels to perform any task may fail in their classroom.

The Extent of Dependency on Parents and Teachers

Some children are too dependent on their parents and teachers. More often, they seek constant parental intervention to perform any tasks or assignments. They are dependant, and seek protection from their parents and teachers. The quality of independent thinking has a lot of bearing on learning; children who possess intrinsic motivation are good in independent thinking which makes them confident and courageous.

Emotional Intelligence

Children, who are intrinsically motivated, are emotionally strong and stable. Two characteristic set them, apart from children, who display very poor emotional intelligence - emotionally stronger children enjoy doing their work, and they show deep levels of satisfaction while doing it.

Boosting motivation among young children is a challenging task. However, parents will have access to a series of techniques and methods to boost motivation among their children. Continue to read How to Motivate Children to Achieve - Catalyzing an Internal Urge to Succeed in Life.


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