10 Easy Ways To Help Your Child Succeed in School

10 Easy Ways To Help Your Child Succeed in School

A Short End-Of-The-Year List To Spur Self-Improvement
Why No One Needs “Fixing” or Wants Unsolicited Advice

Every parent wants to partner with their child’s school to encourage her/his growth and development. Motivation is the secret to help children develop their greatest potential and parents will do well to learn it. The following easy ways to help your child succeed in school are a great place to start:

1. Set the Right Expectations

Positive parents foster positive children. Expect your child to succeed and s/he will succeed. Kids are sensitive about how grownups view them. At the same time, you must know your child’s strength and weakness so as to set the right expectations. Never make negative statements around the children as these only discourage.

2. Communicate Clearly With Your Child

Communication is very important to understand the child’s strengths, interests and passions. Ask her/him where their interests lie and then offer your opinions. Help your child see his/her strengths and explain to them that these should be their focus. Also highlight the areas that need improvement and state that you expect her/him to make top effort in those too.

3. Re-evaluate From Time to Time

Re-evaluate your child’s abilities, interests and strengths from time to time since children change as they grow. Communicate frequently and make adjustments. This is the easiest way to help your child succeed in middle school and high school.

4. Help Your Child Set Goals

Just like adults need goals and purpose in life, children need goals too. Goals help them get better at organizing and also establish ideas into reality. For a child to set meaningful goals, make her/him write them down in a journal. Written goals are timely reminders to help the child stay organized. It is also important to set specific goals. Instead of just saying “You should do better in Math next semester”, you could say “Instead of 60% you should try to achieve 80%”. Specific goals let the child know what exactly is expected of her/him. Also, to help the child accomplish those goals, give him tools and ideas like “meet your teacher today after class and get the difficult questions solved”. Talk to your child’s teachers to measure the goals as well. If he/she is getting better marks in weekly assessments, then you know your child is working on the said goals.

5. Get Your Child to Take School Seriously

You can easily partner with the school for the growth and development of your kids. Talk to your child’s teacher from time to time and take out time to help the school in its activities. Support various programs organized by the school such as educational fairs, sports days etc. Keep up with the child’s assignments and stay positive about them. Encourage kids further by promising a recreational activity once they have done their school work.

6. Create a Nurturing Environment for the Child

Establish a routine and create a happy and nurturing environment for your child. Avoid fights, disputes and other negative aspects that could upset the child and keep him/her from succeeding in school. Make sure your child eats healthy and sleeps on time. Set up a schedule that allows the child to do his/her homework assignments on time and also leaves time for adequate physical activity. If possible, take the children on annual family vacations which foster bonding and strengthen relationships.

7. Give Your Child the Freedom to Choose His/her Learning Style

Every child learns differently and uses techniques that are most comfortable to them. For example, some kids can grasp the subject matter in school itself and need to do little at home. On the other hand, others might need revising the same matter several times over at home in order to understand concepts well. As a parent, your job is to help the child understand and use the learning style that feels most comfortable. You can also encourage the use of rhymes, mind-maps and acronyms and offer education tools and resources like videos to help the child understand and memorize things easily.

8. Speak the Language of Encouragement

Use positive words like ‘great’, ‘good’, ‘awesome’. Let your child know that you are proud of him/her for doing well in class assignments or extracurricular activities. Notice the efforts your child has put in and give encouragement regardless of the performance.

9. Expand Your Child’s Learning

If you child reads a classic find out if the same is available on video. Visit museums and take some time to read about stuff the child may be are learning in school. This way, you can discuss the concept further with her/him. Go on the Internet and find out stuff related to subjects your children are studying.

10. Encourage the Child To Be Resilient

Believe in your child’s ability to solve problems and view mistakes as stepping stones to success. Empathize with your child and support his/her interests and talents.

By using these easy ways to motivate your child, you can help them use their strengths and abilities which they can use in the future.


  1. Oh, boy. Here’s my deal: We’re in the anxiety loop that I’m trying to pull out of. My daughter is a Junior. She has almost completely stopped doing ANY work at home (never did much anyway). The only times she does homework is during her two resource room periods each day, and even these aren’t enough. She is currently failing 2 classes, and that may become 3. She is super involved in extra curriculars that are really great…thankfully she doesn’t drink, smoke, do drugs, have sex…if I were to set boundaries like, “You may visit your friends after you do homework,” or “You may have your phone after your do homework,” I have to deal with intense rage. This sets her brother into an anxiety fit, and it disturbs our neighbor’s peace (we are in a duplex). Last year, I took her phone away, and she raged so loud, that a neighbor called the police. I think what I’m seeing is the things I can control: spending money, giving rides, the phone (although this is a really tricky one due to rage issues). Not sure where I’m going with this post except to say this is a huge lesson for me in letting go of control issues.

  2. Hello,

    My child is currently in 9th grade. His grades have always been a concern for me but now that he is in high school, I don’t know what to do. I help him at home but I just got done emailing his math teacher and she stated that it seems as though my son takes math as a joke and maybe he needs outside tutoring. I just don’t know what to do, he has tutoring at school and he comes home and I help him with problems and he seems to understand what we do at home yet his grades don’t reflect that. I have a meeting with her next week but I’m not sure that will even help at this point. She says that he has trouble focusing and his 3rd grade teacher mentioned that to me as well. I tried to do small stuff at home but nothing seems to help. I really don’t want to put him on medication. PLEASE if anyone out there knows anything I can do PLEASE let me know.

    I’ve cried about this, I’ve yelled at him, I’ve tried to talk with him to be on his team yet nothing works. I’m a single parent and I just need more resources.

  3. @MomOfOne85 Hello Mom – I too am having problems the exact same as you. His math teacher called me today to say that he acts like he doesn’t care. I know he does care because I have asked him. He tells me he is doing his best. I too have cried, yelled, talked to him, talked to teachers…there is not much help out there from teachers or the school. I’ve done most of the research on my own. Even his specialist did not tell me any of this about his brain or how to help motivate him. At least he has a teacher in his LD class that is helping some. She tells me what homework he has each week and called me today to tell me what she has noticed.

    I do give my son medication. If he is on the correct one it will not make him a zombie. We have switched 3 times before we found the right one. Once he learns how to manage the distractions he can decide if he does not want to take the medicine any longer. Once their brain matures to focus they can learn to control it. My niece did this and did very well, but didn’t stop until college. You wouldn’t not take heart medication if you needed it just because it is medicine.

    I am 51 and grew up with this but teachers would just say I was daydreaming. School is different these days and I think the way they are teaching is a big reason why they are not getting it.

    I would love to have other parents to talk to that is going through the same thing but the other Autism Spectrum kids in the parent group have the overly smarts kids that do not know how to relate to others and do not understand my issues.

    This company has a 4 CD program called Total Focus that says it will help understand and know how to help your child. I think I am going to buy it or see if anyone on Ebay is selling theirs.

    I would love to talk sometime if I had a way to reach you. It helps when others understand what you are going through. They say it takes a village to raise a kid but I haven’t found that village yet.

  4. Hi. My 10 year old, 5th grader is struggling with all of his classes. He has ADD and is on an 504 education plan. He is very unorganized and “forgets” to write down homework assignments. We just found out that he has four F’s at midterm. My husband wants to take away his sports so he can focus on school. I am completely against this as his sports make him feel more confident about himself, as he knows he is “not as smart” as his friends. I want to help him become a better student without removing him from his athletics and teach him about balance.

    Any insight/advice would be appreciated.

  5. We have a 17yo senior. Numerous times weve dealt with the struggles of homework, bad grades and having most of everything taken away until grades improve. There is always homework time, everyday. This year we decided with the two younger ones, homework would be in good amounts so we got her a desk in her room, she got a laptop for her birthday, partial purchase by her, so her acedemics could be focused on. Weve reverted to having her back downstairs where we could supervise daily homework time. Were at the end of our rope. She was failing 3 classes and now shes failing a 4th and depending on the next week, may fail high school because of this one class. Discougarged, & disappointed ive been trying to follow this tips but again, im only human.

  6. I am a father of a 16 year old young lady. She is doing horrible in school. Her mother and I get notifications each time that her grade changes. We have contacted the teachers to see what can be done to help and what the trouble may be. We have been told that she is a great person and a hot to have in class but it is her assignments, quiz and test scores that are Edgecombe her grades. She says she had no homework, wants to continue to chat with friends, go see friends, play video games, or just stay alone in her room with the family dogs. We have attempted to motivate her in many different ways. Monetarily, gifts, trips or outings and more freedom. None has worked as in the article the tougher we get the farther she pulls away, the greater the attitude and less work. It has now gotten to the point a “Your on your own” level. She has lost “toys” and given aname attitude from her mother of, if your grades are not up don’t talk to me. She has an attitude toward of her of you don’t want to work then you are a 16 year old adult fend for your self while babying the younger sister who is is given the perks because she asks for help with school and gets A’s and B’s. I really need help, this is pulling the family apart…

  7. Hi,

    I am concerned about a 10th grader boy, who in my opinion is just lazy in doing the work. There’s no motivation at all even when I try to create motivation there’s no interest. I don’t know how to push him, his only interest is video games and I support thats what he wants to do. However, you have to pass credits to do any program in college or university. You cant get into college or university with 36% in Science and English. As much as this article says ‘don’t futurize’ teenagers need to pass credits to move on thats reality.

  8. Kids spend most of their time in school. So it can be called as their second home. The teachers should always motivate the kids to do better everyday. My daughter studies in Greenwood High and I am very proud to say that the teachers of this school appreciate kids for every small thing and they are always motivated to keep up the good work.

  9. Hi,

    I’m concerned for my 4th grader with her failing graders this year. All the years prior she was a honor student and worked hard to recieve the terrific kid award and any other awards she could pick up along the way. It was never expected of her but rather her own personal goals she set for herself, which was amazing! She has started a new school and expressed how she’s doesn’t like it there and misses her old school. Her father feels I’m making excuses for her and her teacher stated she would have never guessed that my daughter was having a hard time adjusting. I feel deeply that her new ” I don’t care” attitude is because she is having a hard time adjusting to not only the new school but a harder grade level. She’s always had a hard time with reading but a love for math and science. This year she has zero intrest in any subject and no interest in meeting her own personal goals. I also believe that because she lives two weeks out of a month with one parent and then two weeks with the other both house holds having completely different disciplining styles and structure in general could be a contributing factor. I’m more encouraging with set times for everything from homework, family time, to bathtime and bed. The other house hold is more go do your homework and leave us alone kind of deal and their way of encouraging her is grounding for a month and telling her she can only read till it’s her bedtime. It’s just so hard, I know how bright she is and I would love nothing more than to see her smile and love going to school like she use too. How can I get my little girl back on track?