How to Promote Engaged Learning at Home

Does your son come home from school feeling unmotivated or disconnected from his day? Does he lack a sense of enthusiasm for what he’s learning?

Here’s another question: If you had to describe the young male spirit in a few words, what would they be? Rambunctious? Rowdy? Noisy? What about inquisitive and active?

Boys are a fun bunch. As a parent to a young man, you know this better than anyone. But did you know their learning style requires the same kind of energy and engagement they display while outside of the classroom?

Your son wants to learn. But we understand that can be hard to see when his after-school disposition reads otherwise. So how can you help reignite your son’s love of learning?

Here are five ways you can promote engaged learning at home and beyond:

  1. Request a drawing. According to an article published in The Wall Street Journal, research done in neuroscience has revealed that drawing is a productive learning tool. The research suggests that the act of doodling can increase information retention and help the brain focus, problem solve, and process information.1 If your son is having a difficult time understanding a math problem, biology concept, or simply staying focused to study, ask him to draw what he’s learning.
  2. Take a trip. Visiting a museum, science center, historical monument, or attending a cultural fair or play will immerse your son deep in his studies. The National Endowment for the Arts encourages destination-based learning.2 When your son is surrounded by activity, real-life examples of what he’s learning, and is empowered to interact with classroom concepts, his imagination and education will soar.
  3. Explore nature. Not only will a trip into Mother Nature make science class come to life for your son, but according to National Geographic, it will also improve his cognitive abilities and grow his creativity.3
  4. Rent an audiobook. If your son’s mind tends to drift when asked to read silently, the American Library Association suggests introducing an audio version of his textbook or chapter book to help him increase reading comprehension.4 Audiobooks make reading an interactive activity, boosting his motivation to understand the material.
  5. Host a family learning night. According to 30 years of research conducted by the United States Department of Education, when a family is involved in their child’s education the child is more likely to succeed.5 Discuss what your son is learning in school at the dinner table; have a family movie night watching a documentary that relates to material your son is learning about; and encourage your son to give you a lesson on a topic he’s passionate about.

Teaching your son ways to engage in this education will help him grasp concepts in a way that’s useful to him.

At GRA, we deliver a learning environment that’s conducive to the male brain by assigning hands-on projects, presenting information visually, using props in the classroom, and identifying individual learning strategies suited toward each young man’s needs.

Discover how an education tailored toward boys will help your son reconnect with his school work and achieve success on his own energetic terms.

Resources:

1 Shellenbarger, Sue. The Wall Street Journal. "The Power of the Doodle: Improve Your Focus and Memory." Accessed November 5, 2015. http://www.wsj.com/articles/the-power-of-the-doodle-improve-your-focus-and-memory-1406675744.

2 Gross, Rebecca. National Endowment for the Arts. "The Importance of Taking Children to Museums." Accessed November 6, 2015. https://www.arts.gov/art-works/2014/importance-taking-children-museums.

3 Howard, Brian, Clark. National Geographic. "Connecting With Nature Boosts Creativity and Health." Accessed November 6, 2015. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2013/06/130628-richard-louv-nature-deficit-disorder-health-environment/.

4 American Library Association. "Use of Audiobooks in a School Library and Positive Effects of Struggling Readers’ Participation in a Library-Sponsored Audiobook Club." Accessed November 5, 2015. http://www.ala.org/aasl/sites/ala.org.aasl/files/content/aaslpubsandjournals/slr/vol16/SLR_Use_of_AudiobooksV16.pdf.

5 United States Department of Education. "Family Involvement in Children's Education." Accessed November 6, 2015. https://www2.ed.gov/pubs/FamInvolve/execsumm.html.