How to learn?

Bad grade justified by a surprising form of test? Or maybe the so-called "Overwhelming" as the main culprit for the weakening of motivation and, as a result, low results? These can be the consequences of incorrect selection of learning strategies and lack of knowledge on how to effectively absorb knowledge. It's worth knowing how to talk to a child who is less and less eager to learn.

Learning at school is focused on acquiring knowledge and acquiring skills - but often students do not know what tools to use while learning. So, they use very inefficient methods. They can lead to reduced motivation or learned helplessness, ultimately extend the time of learning and take away the chance to pursue a hobby or meeting with friends. A parent who knows the basics of the learning process can be a great consultant on effective learning.


Individual approach to learning

This time it is not about an individual approach to the child, but to the material to be assimilated. It is worth teaching a child the habit of assessing the content they intend to learn. Depending on the specific material, choose the right method. The fact that most of the time should be reserved for long and difficult material should not surprise anyone. Longer working hours, however, do not mean longer breaks, quite the opposite - the more difficult the content to master, the shorter the breaks should be. If your child plans to study intricate subjects in several turns, the first should be longer than the others.


How to remember better?

Just because a child has trouble remembering may mean using an ineffective strategy. Repetition alone can prove itself at the very beginning of a career in elementary school, then the amount of material requires more sophisticated techniques. When looking for a good strategy, it's important to know what improves the memory process. First of all, it is self-reliance - completing a task by yourself greatly increases memory performance compared to watching someone else's task perform. Instead of showing you how to solve a math problem, support your child to do it himself. The child should be praised for his involvement, asking support questions, helping to organize work or indicating the sources in which he will find help. Independence in finding information also favors better remembering - a child who puts a little effort into finding information or coming up with a solution will remember it better than his colleague to whom the same information was simply given.


Different methods for different tests

For many students, information about the form of checking knowledge is very important - especially older people know that you have to learn differently for the test with open questions, and differently for those with answers to choose from. What is the difference? Even if the child only reads his notes, during the closed text he will probably recognize among the mismatched answers those that he saw in the read texts. It may, however, have difficulty extracting unfixed content from memory and fail on tasks that require reproduction - that is, answering an open question. It is worth making your child aware that reading (i.e. relying on pictorial traces) is not synonymous with learning (creating verbal traces). He can use this knowledge by assessing which parts of the material he will acquire accurately, and which are less important, superficially.


So, what to do to learn efficiently?

First of all, the student should do homework and learn at fixed times, so that there is still time for pleasure, rest or hobby realization. In case of tests from a larger material, it is worth planning the time to study well in advance to calmly acquire knowledge. It should be remembered that a parent, aunt, grandmother or sister cannot give a ready solution to a task. Then we take away the child's possibilities of thinking, trying to solve the task, and finally analyzing what field it is worth devoting time to. The parent is meant to be help but not the answer. Let's teach children independence!



Jagodzińska, M. (2013). Psychologia pamięci: badania, teorie, zastosowania.

Gliwice: Wydawnictwo Helion.

13th International Conference „Keeping Children and Young People safe online”

On September 17-18, 2019, the 13th International Conference „Keeping Children and Young People safe online” took place in Warsaw. Our Foundation was represented by Natalia Mirosz. On the first day of the conference there was a debate on how parents can help their children use new technologies in a safe and constructive way. The next panel was devoted to parenthood and the role of education in the age of digital revolution. How to deal with new technologies at school was also discussed. The summary of the first day was the screening of the film "Teen Confessions" (documentary, Israel, 2018).

During the next day, two issues were developed: cyberbullying and sexting. We took part in the session: "Cyberbullying, online aggression, online hate speech". We met many inspiring people, representatives of many organizations and initiators of various events. The day ended with a joint open debate covering topics discussed during the conference.

To sum up - these were two days full of new experiences and learning, we will definitely use the acquired knowledge during the workshops we run.

Child and homework

Overloaded school

In today’s reality of Polish education, homework is an integral part of school duties. They complement the material learned during the teaching lessons, its consolidation and, in a way, the implementation of the assumptions of the core curriculum. Educational programs are heavily overloaded, that is why the amount of homework from class to class increases and accumulates. Children's free time is therefore very limited and centers around homework, which often requires the attention and help of parents.


Check or not check?

Checking the lessons done by your child is worth practicing. However, do not look for errors severely! People learn in the process; it is good to emphasize that mistakes are a natural element and kind inattention is a way to learn. Verification of own mistakes perfectly consolidates the improved knowledge. The parent's role is support, constructive commentary and clear praise for efforts and regularity.


How to comment on children's efforts?


Praise is a message that adds wings, encourages further efforts, and strengthens the relationship. That is why it is also worth praising in situations of partial task completion. Try to avoid generalizations (e.g. It's all wrong). Constructive assessment extracts individual parts draw attention to the manner of performance, correctness, and approach to work. Specification at what stage the mistake was made and what exactly needs improvement. Extract the positive part of the work and motivate to act.


When the child has difficulty with the material?

It all depends on how much free time a parent can devote to the child. When a child does not understand the instructions and repeated the same mistakes many times, he becomes reluctant to learn. This is the time when parents are most needed. The difficulty is that the child is not able to perform the task alone, and we want to teach him this independence.


Patience and teaching aids

The golden rule of small steps will also work this time! Just like the parent's great patience and a large set of home teaching aids. Sticks for counting, abacus, calligraphy pattern of written letters, spelling dictionary, multiplication table - available on the student's desk, will support him during the struggle with the task. The more attractive the items are, the more likely they will be to use them. There are also a lot of educational games on the market that will help turn learning into fun. This will teach a small student both perseverance and faith in the possibility of overcoming problems. Greater involvement in the development of the material will make memorization lighter.


Difficult tasks - difficult emotions

Nerves, anger and frustration can naturally appear during hardships, quenching them is difficult and they are not always successful. Regulation of difficult emotions is, however, an extremely important life competence, and school difficulties are a natural field for exercise. Although this often requires a parent to show their own example of good regulation of emotions, when the child needs to explain the same thing again, valuable help will be to help them name difficult emotions, understand their causes and choose the most appropriate actions.


Student - a small manager

Homework for each student is a challenge, even if it is not difficult in itself, it is associated with organizing your time. We know perfectly well that this is also a problem for many adults. You should plan your tasks diligently and with full commitment. Let's help children learn the value of daily routine. The constant rhythm of the day, where you have to do all the duties, from lessons to cleaning, allows you to become independent. The more the child organizes its own time properly, the better it will perform its subsequent duties.




Joanna Łukasik "Spoko lekcja"

Iwona Czaja Chudyba „ Jak rozwijać zdolności dziecka?”




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