• Benjamin Lam

How to motivate my kids for their studies in Singapore - Helping my unmotivated kids

Updated: Aug 23

Every parent out there has experienced their fair share of challenges with their kids. A lack of motivation can be one of the most frustrating struggles for parents, but it's not an impossible problem to overcome.

In Singapore, where the education system can be stressful and demanding on both the kids and the parents, motivation is important to keep the momentum going and making the learning process more fun! Here are some helpful strategies, tips and ideas on how to help motivate your kid.

What is the role of parents in motivating their children?

The role of parents in motivating their children is very important. We know that parents love their children, they want the best for them, be a positive role model, and they want what is best for them. However, many parents do not know how to motivate their children in a way that will be long-lasting. If you want your child to be successful, you must motivate them.

Point to note: Motivation starts with the parents, not the kids - if you want them to be motivated, you must first be motivated for them!

The 3 Keys to Motivating Your Children In Their Studies

1. Positive Reinforcement

Some parents have the tendency to go on the defensive with their children. Beware of statements like, "You're not good at that...I'm not going to let you do it." "You're not smart enough to do it. I'm not going to let you do that." "You're not going to get anything out of can't do it." These statements are not helpful. If you make statements like these to your child, and they have a lack of motivation, you are not motivating them, but could instead do the opposite.

Try to use positive reinforcement to motivate your children. What exactly is positive reinforcement? It is a reward for performing an action. When you give your child a reward, you are encouraging the child to repeat the action. For example, if your child focuses and does well in their exams, you can give your child a reward. Some kids may suffer from a lack of motivation, and this could spur them to believe in themselves and do better!

2. How to manage my kids when they do not do well in their exams?

When your kids do not perform well in their exams, it is not the time to give them a lecture on concentration or their results, you need to give them a positive reinforcement. You should try to be optimistic and tell them that you believe they can do better and that you are proud of them. You can also tell them that you are proud of the way they are handling their stress. Try not to always focus on the result, but also on the learning experience that they had.

Stress is one of the biggest things that they will be facing in the examination. It is better for them to be positive and tell them that you love them and you are confident that they will do well, because that would help them to manage this situation.

3. Helping kids find their own motivation - Intrinsic Motivation

This can be challenging sometimes. Studies can be stressful and mundane for kids, especially when they want to hang out with their friends or take these study stress off them. Short and concise lessons, broken down into simple step by step methods can help. Students may find these more easy to digest and make learning more achievable, making it easier for them to understand, and having intrinsic motivation to try again the next day!

Traditionally, classes tend to be 2 hours long, packed with information and may of them lose interest and concentration within the first half of the lessons. What kids these days want to see is visible improvements in themselves, which would motivate them to achieve more!

An important tip to take note of is to spread out the workload throughout the year and not cramp all the revision towards the exam period. Encourage your child to start doing one small segment of a topic each day. This reduces the overall stress, and creates a habit for them to do so. When tackling topics step-by-step, it makes it easier for them to understand each topic better.

Something different you can consider it to let them help their weaker friends. This may seem unconventional, but this would build up confidence, while the weaker students get a chance to learn from their friends and both can benefit and do well together!

What we suggest you consider:

  1. Make sure study times are not longer than 45 minutes per session and have a step by step plan

  2. Give ample breaks between

  3. Do some quizzes/exercises to make sure that your child understands the topic well

  4. Use positive reinforcement if they are unable to get it right

  5. Spread out the workload - no last minute rushing to cramp everything in


We believe kids have the ability to do well and have the internal motivation to do so. Lack of motivation may be overcome but some of the suggestions that we have above. Learning issues and unmotivated children may have problems can also be sorted with come of the considerations that we have listed above. Also, always remember to praise your children when they do well to bring them a sense of accomplishment!

What Is LearnUp?

You may also want to consider our programs which are built around this study method:

Our programs are created with the student's learning process in mind. We focus on bite sized information which allows fuller understanding of each topic. Best of all, we have a community which allows students to interact directly with the mentors, and answer any questions that they have, or help them through difficult questions! Your kids will never feel discouraged again!

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