When people discuss academic struggles, they often target students who have trouble keeping up with their learning. Naturally, people want to help those who appear to have fallen behind.
But the inverse – not feeling challenged enough – can be every bit as frustrating to a young learner. The consequence of academic boredom is not simply limited to lost time. When students feel unchallenged by their learning environment, they may act out, shut off or take a blasé approach to their education.
If you sense that your school-aged kid’s academic needs aren’t being met, you have a few options. Below, let’s discuss some steps you can take to satisfy a student who doesn’t feel challenged at school.
Consider Self-Paced Learning
Self-paced learning is an approach to education that is, thankfully, gaining traction nowadays. Most often, you see self-paced learning in online high school courses, where students are free to move through a course as quickly or slowly as they like.
For students who struggle with their courses, self-paced learning allows them to take time and digest concepts; they aren’t required to keep pace with classmates. And for students who don’t feel challenged, it’s an opportunity to learn quickly.
A common reason students feel unchallenged at school is because they have to follow the same speed as a roomful of peers. Self-paced learning liberates students from that feeling of academic confinement.
Encourage Them to Get Ahead in Classes
Another reason to enroll a gifted student in an online school is that they can get ahead in their courses. In a traditional brick-and-mortar school, students have to wait for a new semester or year before advancing their courses. But at an online school, students are free to take a new course directly after (or even during) their current courses.
Therefore, students who finish courses quickly can gain their graduation credits (and perquisites for post-secondary school) faster.
Enroll Them in Extracurricular Academics
Education happens outside of the classroom too. If your kid doesn’t feel challenged at school, perhaps you can challenge them away from school.
Several extracurricular options exist for school-aged kids to learn about their interests:
- coding camps
- science camps
- creative writing groups
- book clubs
- robotics courses
- museum tours
- art competitions
- and much more
Ask your kid what they are most interested in learning, then look for local groups, classes and competitions with a similar focus.
Buy Them University Textbooks
University textbooks are a great way of looking ahead at the challenging work of post-secondary academics. Sure, they might not be able to enroll quite yet. But that doesn’t mean they can’t familiarize themselves with the courses in advance.
Reading advanced textbooks is also a great way of preparing them for the more daunting work of university courses – that way, when/if they attend post-secondary school, they aren’t blindsided by unfamiliar material.
Parents don’t need to sit idly by as their kids struggle in an unchallenging environment. They can enrol their kids in self-paced online schools, help research extracurricular options or help pay for advanced university textbooks.
Credit: George Milton Via Pexels