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Leaving Cert boy won't study

Leaving Cert boy won´t study           reply
23/02/2010 12:58 - Ask Mother Hen (Locality: Clare)
My son just doesn´t seem to be able to motivate himself to study. He is very bright and this is such a shame. He has ambitions about college, etc., but I feel he is going to be disappointed. He just does enough homework to get by. He gets very aggressive if I nag about this, but I am seriously worried at this stage. I feel he may be somewhat depressed and has suffered anxiety episodes in the past. Any advice would be welcome.

re : Leaving Cert boy won´t study           reply
23/02/2010 13:47 - Ask Mother Hen
This is a difficult situation. The trick here is to motivate him so that he studies because he has a goal. I am sure you have held all of the usual conversations with him about choices, doing well, feeling like he has done his best and so on. Perhaps now you could use some other methods to motivate him.
There are two things that you could do to try. First, together you could look at what courses he wishes to attend after school and note the points required for each. Again, together, you can go through each of his subjects and ask him what he thinks he will realistically get. Add the points up and see if he needs to raise his expectations. By working out a goal result with him on each subject, it will be clear to him what he needs to do in each subject to get what he wants. I think it is easier to aim for 6 individual grades and points rather than aiming for an overall result. Breaking it down into ´chunks´ can make it easier to concentrate on each smaller goal to reach the overall goal. Does that make sense?
The second thing that you could do is to work out a reward for him depending on each result. This could be a money amount for each point (e.g. 50 cent per point would mean he gets 50euro for every 100 points). Agree on an amount that you can afford! This may give him a further incentive if he has something in mind that he wants to buy out of the money. To help him focus, try to get a picture or catalog on whatever it is he wants to buy out of his money and pin it up on the wall!
It is vitally important in both of these cases that you work with your son to estimate grades, agree bonus payments, get a picture of what he wants to buy and so on. He has to be committed to being part of this deal so his involvement in all aspects is important.
Wish him luck from me!

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