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Table of Contents

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Published on Mar 15, 2022
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Juliya Smith

How To Motivate Your Teenager To Do Better In School |

During teenage, teens change a lot, both physically and mentally. It is the most sensitive stage of their life, and parents need to be extremely cautious while handling teenagers. Handling teenagers is the most challenging job one could ever have, and many parents struggle to control them in the right way.

Teenage is such a period in life where they can easily be demotivated or feel inferior to themselves. When teenagers see children of their age doing better than them, they start to feel insecure about themselves.


Due to several changes in their lives, teenagers start to feel lazy and try to avoid everyone around them and all their work, especially academic work. Teenagers can get distracted by the various factors, and sometimes they even forget goals they set when they were tweens.

You can see during teenage years; usually, teenagers' academic scores get low, and they get distracted by lots of factors and start to neglect their studies. You need to motivate your teenager to do better in school to make them academically challenging.

One of the reasons for teenagers to have a lack of motivation in school activities is fear of failure. During teenage, teens feel they are perfect and know everything. And if they fail once, they do not like to retry and start to feel demotivated.

The next thing that has affected teens' motivation is intrinsic motivation. Teenagers want to do things that will make other people happy and forget about their internal happiness. They are into extrinsic motivation and will depend on others to get motivated.

Apart from that, some other things that impact motivating your teenager are lack of proper diet, depression, lack of sleep, etc. that eventually affects their mental health. Further, read along to know how to motivate your teenager to do better in school.

How to Motivate your Teenager to do Better in School

Here are some of the effective methods on how to motivate your teenager to do better in school. Have a look.

1. Do Not Keep Nagging your Kids to Study

One common mistake parents make to improve their academic performance is continuously nagging teens to study. Parents feel that nagging teens to learn will motivate teenagers to perform well. But it will discourage children from doing it.


For instance, constantly telling your children things like "when I was your age" or "Look, your friend has got A in all subjects" will reduce their motivation.

Teenagers will start to take all your words as a comparison, and they will begin to feel incompetent about themselves. Instead of motivating them, nagging children about the same thing will make them rebellious. They will start to take every word of yours as an attack on them.

Some parents even give a long lecture to their kids from time to time. Listening to you will tire your kids; they will not be motivated; instead, they will start to copy your actions.

2. Set Routine for Children

Routines are essential for anyone to keep on track and disciplined. Making a routine will help manage your teen's life much easier.

Teenagers are highly active and want to participate in every activity they have in their school or even outside the school. It would be best to stop your child from participating in activities they want.

Try to set a limit on their Internet time. But it would be best if you made sure that your children are giving equal importance to their school work. This is the reason for you to make a routine for your kids.

For instance, if your child wants to go to music class, then you can set routines like music class from 5 to 6 PM and study time from 8 to 10 PM."

Without making a routine, it can be difficult for you to manage your child's daily activities. By making a routine, you should not yell at your kids to do this and do that. You need to make a routine that your kids can follow comfortably and is within their comfort zone.

However, sometimes routines might not work if your kids do not follow them correctly. Hence, you should ensure that your child is following their way correctly.

3. Help them to Break Bigger Goal into Smaller Pieces

Teenagers dream of bigger goals at a minimum age. It is such a time when teens get confused regarding what they want to do in the future. It would help if you treated your child as your friend, listened to what they wanted, and helped them achieve their goal.

Sometimes teenagers can get stressed about their goals; they might get overwhelmed about their plans.

Hence, you need to help your teen with their goal by managing goals in the most manageable way. For that, you can break your teen’s dreams into smaller goals, and breaking goals into smaller goals will help children achieve their goals faster.

For instance, your child wants to improve their school performance and set goals to get an 'A' in all the subjects. Then you can set smaller goals like improving scores in the subjects they find more challenging, performing tests regularly, limiting their screen time and so on.

4. Set Study Spot for Your Kids

If you allow your teen to study anywhere they like, they can even complete their homework in front of their screen. But have you ever wondered how effective it is to work-study in front of a screen or around noises? Will it help to improve their school performance?


It is not suitable for teenagers to work or study from anywhere they like. They can quickly get distracted, and even though they complete their work, they may not fully remember or understand the subject matter they are working on.

Therefore, you need to set a study spot for your teens to help them focus on their studies. While selecting a study spot for your teen, make sure it is entirely noise-free, and not even their siblings are studying around.

You can even set your work area or office space around your teen’s study space so that they can seek help from you whenever they are having problems.

5. Participate with them

Teens love when their parents participate in any activities they are interested in, and parents' involvement in any activities will motivate teens to do better. Similarly, when you get involved in your kid's academic work, they will find it exciting and want to work hard.

It would be best if you take an interest in their school and academic life. Try to have frequent conversations about their school work, how it is going, where the following tests are, the previous test result, and so on. It would be best to have a proper conversation about their study rather than interrogating them about their studies.

Also, it would help if you were around them when they are doing their homework. This will ensure that you are available to them to solve any problem with their studies.

One thing that you need to be sure of is not to overdo it. Do not always talk about their studies; this will make your teen monotonous about their studies.

6. Praise and Reward for their Effort More than Result

One important thing that you need to teach your kids about is hardwood matters more than results. To prepare your kids about the importance of hard work and respect hard work, you can reward or praise them every time they work hard.

When you keep praising and rewarding your kids for their hard work regardless of their result, they will never stop their hard work. Also, you praise your kid's hard work because teens can get upset when they cannot get the result even though they worked hard. By honoring them, they will get motivated to work hard in the future.

For instance, if your child worked hard to get an "A" in all subjects, but he could not, then they can get up. To cheer up your teen and make them do better in the future, get them some rewards and talk about how you recognize their hard work, which will motivate your child.

7. Tell Them It's Ok to Make Mistake

Mistakes are something that everyone is afraid of making. Teenagers especially think they know everything and can never make mistakes, which is wrong.

Anyone can make a mistake, and it is customary to make a mistake, but you need to accept the error you have made. It would be best to teach your teen there is nothing wrong with making mistakes.


For students, they need to make mistakes and learn from them. Without knowing about their mistakes, they cannot improve their performance.

It is your responsibility to point out your child's mistakes and teach them how to rectify their mistakes.

For instance, if your kids fail the exam and want to improve their marks. Then instead of scolding them and punishing them, tell them mistakes happen, and they can improve their mistakes.

When your teens stop worrying about making mistakes, they can easily take opportunities in their ways. Don't be hard on yourself or your teens, and also, they will not get discouraged by their failure.

8. Use Reinforcement Technique

There is usually debate on rewarding children for their excellent performance. Many parents think not to reward children despite their better school performance. At the same time, others believe that rewarding will motivate the teen to do better in the future.

In my opinion, you need to use reinforcement techniques to motivate your teenager to do better in school. While using reward and reinforcement techniques to improve your child's academic performance, do not use expensive rewards, which can make your child greedy.

For small kids, reinforcement techniques like high five, hugging, and other emotional techniques can work. While for teens, you can offer some extra screen time if they do well in their studies.

Setting such rewards will help your teen do their work better and grab the prize. One thing that you need to make sure of is that you do not ever overset rewards. If you do so, teengers will do their work to get a bonus, not gain knowledge.

9. Meet your Teen’s Teacher

If you have a naughty teen or hide their school work, you better contact their teachers. In such cases, you must make your children's teachers your ally.

When your teens are at home, you can keep an eye on them all the time, but you don't know what they are up to when they are at school. Therefore, to know your kids' activities in school, you should make a good relationship with your kids' teachers.

To help your teenager's school performance, you can plan with their teachers and share ideas with them. If your child has some problem, you can even share it with their teachers and seek help from them. Teachers can help you a lot in improving your child's school performance.

10. Take Help from Outside

Aside from taking help from teachers, you can even ask help from your student's tutors if they have some senior students they look up to.

Sometimes, either due to behavior issues, your child might not understand all topics they have been taught in their school. Your child might need extra help for their studies. For this reason, you may have to hire a tutor for your child.

You can get the help of tutors to motivate your child to do better. Sometimes, you can even get help from senior students who can help your children do better.

Your teen can get help from seniors regarding what to study and how they perform in the class, which are the better subjects they can take. Your child feels they can easily relate to their seniors, and hence, they listen to their seniors the most.

11. Do Not Set Future Goal for them without their Consent

Setting goals for your teen does not mean you motivate your teenager to do better in school. You need to understand your child's feelings, know what they want to be or do in the future and let them be what they want to be.

Even if your teen doesn't know what they want to do, you should not force them to decide as soon as they can. Thinking about the future can be overwhelming for children. Apart from asking your children to focus on their studies, it would be best to encourage them to participate in other school activities.

You will not make teens motivated just by continuously ranting about their future. Instead, your teen will start to get anxious and stressed about not setting goals. Setting goals for your children by yourself is like forcing them to do things that they might not even be interested in doing.

12. Provide a Sense of Freedom

If you want motivated teens willing to do better in school, you should provide them a sense of control in their lives. Having control over your teenagers will leave your kids with very little motivation within them.

If you do not allow your kids to have a sense of freedom or keep involving yourself in their life, they will depend on you forever.

For instance, if you keep picking and dropping your child at school, even if they can go on their own, they will always seek your help to go to school or come home.

Likewise, when you allow your child to choose subjects in their school as their wish, they can perform better in their school. If they select the subject on their own as per their interest and will always be willing to study.

It would help if you don’t always control your child; it is better to provide some freedom in their life as they grow up.

13. Try to Make Learning Fun

You cannot deny that learning can be pretty dull, especially if teens are not interested in academic activities. Your kids will not just be motivated by some of your inspirational words. To encourage your teen to do better, you should make learning fun.

First of all, you should find out what subject and activities your teens are interested in. When you encourage your child to do what they are interested in, learning is fun automatically. Don't force your teens to learn things that you find exciting and fun as all the people do not enjoy the same thing.

Furthermore, you can participate with your teens to get excited to do things with you to make learning fun. Also, encourage them to enroll in fun and free educational websites to keep them engaging during learning.

14. Listen to your Teen

As mentioned earlier, during teenage, teens change mentally and physically. It is such a time when teens can feel that no one is interested in them. They can feel lonely and alone, which is the most sensitive time. Hence, you need to be around your teen during this phase of your teen life.


During this phase, your teen can get distracted from their studies, so you need to listen to them about why they are getting distracted. It would be best if you actively listened to the problems they faced and tried to find solutions.

While listening to your teen, try not to interrupt and not make any judgment without knowing their point of view.

When your teen feels that you are around them and available to listen to every problem, they will be motivated to do what they want to do. They will have less fear of getting into trouble or not understanding subject matters.


Summing up, dealing with teens is never easy, and it can be difficult for parents to motivate their teens to do better in their schools. In the course of encouraging your child, you should not overwhelm them.

I hope after reading this article you have got the basic idea on how to motivate your teenager to do better in school. Please feel free to write them in the comment section below if you have some more ideas.

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