At the weekend, I was asked to help my nephew, a 14-years old boy, to improve his English as he got bad grades in two important English exams. It’s a challenge for me as I involve in teaching higher education students and using technologies to help learning.
How could I know why his grades dropped? Does he really like to listen? How can I motivate him? I cannot say good grade doesn’t matter because in the Chinese education system, it’s significant.
First, I tried to find out his attitude to his study, not only English subject, but also all other subjects. Which he likes and which he feels difficult.
Second, I encouraged him to tell me what his real idea about English course is. Does he want to learn it? Does he want to learn it better? Does he think he couldn’t improve at all?
Third, I asked him how he took the exam. What he thought he really understood and what he felt very difficult to learn.
I tried to confirm him that he isn’t bad. In this kind of sensitive age, if a boy lost confidence, it’s hard to make them to have a good view and attitude to themselves.
I used all my knowledge about Motivation and tried to help him to find out what is the problem and make him believe that it’s changeable and improvable.