Packing lunches, doing homework, drilling for spelling tests: The thrill of a new school year has worn off for elementary school students. How do you keep kids motivated to finish out the last months strong?

Set Goals

It’s important to let your child know you have high expectations throughout the year, not just first semester. Communicate with your child’s teacher and work with your child to set goals and rewards for success. Some kids may need an academic goal, while others need goals such as no tardies for the quarter or turning all assignments in on time. Rewards could include a special outing as a family, going out for ice cream, or extra screen time.

Stay Positive

Focus on the excitement of learning, seeing friends, and upcoming events to encourage your child that school is still as fun as it was back in August. Your positive attitude will become contagious and your child will start to get excited about school again, too.

Show an Interest

One thing that can have a huge impact on your child’s excitement about school is his parents’ interest. Ask your child about his day, his friends, the highs and lows. Listen attentively and ask questions. During homework time, be available to help and answer questions. When parents are excited and interested, kids will be also.

Get Involved

Kids who are involved in school activities tend to be more excited about school. Encourage your child to join clubs and after-school activities. Parents can also get involved at the school – when kids see you working at the school, it shows them that you value their time there. Check with your school about volunteer opportunities.

Continue Healthy Habits

Encourage your child to get a good night’s rest, eat a healthy breakfast, and focus on good study habits. An after-school routine to complete homework and chores will help your child fall back into the school schedule after winter break.

Allow Time to Play

Set aside free time as well. Host a play date, have a movie night, go to the park if weather allows, and schedule time for fun and relaxation so kids don’t get too bored with their routine.

Seek Help

If the mid-year blues are still getting to your child, don’t hesitate to contact your child’s teacher to discuss a plan to get your child back on track.

– Sarah Lyons

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