Caregiver Questionnaire – Resource Summary

Unmotivated Child? 6 Ways to Get Your Child Going” by Debbie Pincus features some dynamic questions that can help caregivers understand what their children are thinking.

First, Pincus starts by acknowledging that having an unmotivated student can be a source for fear and anxiety among caregivers, and she outlines good questions to ask oneself:

  • Does your worry compel you to nag, hover, push, cajole, or over-function for your child?
  • Does your frustration cause you to yell, scream, beg, punish, and throw your hands up in despair?
  • Does your helplessness cause you to start fighting with your spouse, who never seems to do as much as you think he or she should do to get your child motivated?
  • Does your fear about your child’s underachieving cause you to keep trying to get him to change and to be more motivated?

If you answer positively to any of these, you may be in danger of using your anxiety as a way to motivate your student – and this is probably not the best idea. Motivating children is not the same as teaching them how to escape a high stress situation, and that could be what we mistakenly do when acting from a position of fear.

The article’s fourth suggestion is one we think deserves special attention:

Learn What Makes Your Child Tick

  • What motivates my child?
  • What does he really want?
  • What questions can I ask that will help him discover and explore his interests?
  • What are his goals and ambitions?

Step far enough away to see your child as a separate person. Then observe what you see. Talk to him to find the answers to the questions above. And then listen—not to what you want the answers to be, but to what your child is saying. Just listen to him. Respect his answers, even if you disagree.

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