The Homeschool Revolution


The #1 Secret to Homeschooling Success

Affirmation. Whenever your kid jumps off the diving board, he will refuse to jump until he knows you’re watching. Then he’ll say over and over “Did you see it? Did you see it??” Whenever I taught piano lessons, at the end of a child’s recital piece, the child wouldn’t look to me, his teacher. He would look toward his Mom or Dad, searching for a look of approval on their face. Every time.

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“Children want appreciation, acknowledgment – to be listened to, to feel important.”

All adults desire this, but children need it. And it’s the surprisingly simple, secret weapon to spur your children on to great success. My old baseball coach used to tell me “For every 10 ‘attaboys’ give only one criticism”. Why? The negative remark always hits harder, and sticks with you.

So if you ever have to say something critical to tell your child, tell him something positive before the criticism, then another positive after the criticism. Then keep piling on the encouragement all day.

Find any excuse to tell your children how proud you are of them and how much you love them.

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When it comes to children, the carrot beats the stick every time.

Whenever I had a big test growing up, and I got a good grade, my dad, who was normally pretty reserved, would go overboard in congratulating me. He would lift me up and spin me around. He would tell me “You’re the smartest kid in the whole world” and that is what drove me to study so hard. If I got a bad grade, I wouldn’t get punished, I would be told “I know you tried your best and I’m sure you’ll do better next time”.

Remember, children see the smallest reward as a big deal. My dad would take me out for a Slurpee if I got an A. Sometimes I’d get a fresh new pack of baseball cards. The value of a Slurpee or a pack of cards to a child is 100 times the dollar amount it costs you. On Shark Tank they would call that a great R.O.I. – Return on investment.

There is a time for firm, strict, discipline, and some children need more “stick” then others. But I’m firmly convinced that the simple act of giving generous, genuine praise is the number one key to successful homeschooling.

Does this ring true to you? What do you think are the best ways to motivate a young child?

My parents raised 5 homeschooled kids, and all 5 of us got full academic scholarships. They must have done something right!