The ability to concentrate is one of the most important factors for learning and development. A large number of school-age children have trouble focusing their attention on one thing for long periods of time, which can have negative effects not only on school success, but also on their self-confidence, motivation, and personality development in general. The ability to concentrate contributes to faster and more precise completion of complex tasks, develops curiosity, and helps distinguish important from unimportant information.
Precisely because of the importance that concentration has on children’s daily life and success, many parents are wondering how to improve their child’s ability to concentrate. Luckily, the solution exists! Child psychologists compare concentration to a muscle that is strengthened by exercise but can also decrease if the brain is not adequately stimulated.
Provide a stimulating learning environment
The way of improving a child’s concentration largely depends on the environment that the child is in. This primarily means that we should provide a distraction-free workspace. We can agree that in a school with a large number of students, it is very difficult to reduce noise and adapt the environment to each child and stimulate their concentration in the right way. To ensure that the child will be able to manage these systems we have no influence on, we should provide them with a stimulating environment for practicing their concentration in other places. For example, the child should have a quiet room for learning at home, without potential distractions such as TV, telephone, etc.
Help your child plan daily responsibilities
Setting up a daily schedule is crucial for improving concentration. The level of concentration sometimes depends on the time of the day, other responsibilities that the child has, and fatigue. The best way to practice concentration is to establish the exact time during the day when the child will be learning. After a while, the child will get accustomed to it and their brain will be better prepared for learning. Besides, scheduling helps determine at which time of the day is your child’s concentration at the highest level. In this way, the child can be more productive during their study time, which helps avoid daydreaming and keep their thoughts from wandering.
Break a big task into small ones
In school-age children, the first impression of the task is highly related to its estimated difficulty. This means that if they perceive the task as too long or complex, the children will immediately find it difficult and their motivation and focus will be weak. By dividing the task into smaller units, the children will be more motivated to work because they will be able to keep track of their progress. Apart from this, your instructions will be more to-the-point and the child will know what is expected of him/ her. For example, instead of telling the child to clean their room, tell him: “First, fold your wardrobe, and later I will tell you what else we need to do.”
Teach children how to set goals
Helping your child set goals and determine the time needed to complete them, can significantly improve the child’s focus during their learning time. Goals should be:
- in line with the child’s abilities;
- set in a way that will give the child enough time to complete them.
Provide them with enough physical activity
School-aged children are full of energy, which you should keep in mind while creating a strategy for improving your child’s focus. Running or a different kind of sport will help your child get rid of the extra energy, and help him/her stay focused during learning time.
Come up with fun games to practice your child’s concentration
Kids learn best through playing, which can be used to boost their concentration. Apart from being fun, they provide numerous developmental benefits.
Educational games provide the child with the possibility of receiving information in various ways through touch, hearing, sight, which contributes to better processing and understanding of the information received. Furthermore, through play, children are more motivated and their concentration and curiosity are at a higher level.
Some useful and fun games for practicing coordination:
- Cross movement that activates both hemispheres, improves coordination and practices proper breathing. This game is often used within the VAK method because it allows the child to receive information in the way that best suits them (visually, auditorily, kinesthetically), which contributes to more effective learning and memorizing.
- Didactic games such as puzzles, dominoes, etc.
- Finding differences in drawings
- Role games
- Thinking games
- Abacus learning is a logical program that significantly improves focus, speed and develops the abilities for all areas requiring concentration. Learn more about mental arithmetic with the advanced abacus, which is a part of the BranOBrain program, here.
Teach children to use visualization while learning
Concentration can be significantly improved if children are able to see what the learning process looks like. Thanks to the initial visualization, children can simply solve demanding and abstract tasks later on. For example, children who continuously learn the abacus, after only six months show extraordinary progress in solving tasks while, at advanced levels, they can solve complicated mathematical operations in a very short time.
Praises and encouragements
In the process of practicing concentration, your child can often show a lack of motivation. That is why you should continually show your support and provide adequate praise and encouragement. We recommend not only to reward the results achieved, but also the process itself, in order to show the child the importance of the effort invested. For example, instead of saying “how great you wrote this”, during the writing process you can tell him/her “well done, you are really making an effort to write this”.
Conclusion: Work with your child every day
If you want to improve your child’s concentration in only six months, you should be ready to practice the aforementioned techniques every day. Concentration development is a process, so to achieve the best results, it should be constant. We recommend setting aside at least 90 minutes each day to practice concentration with your child.
If you are not sure how to apply these tips and improve your child’s concentration in only 6 months, the Active Brain Kids Academy team will be happy to help you! Contact us or schedule your free individual lesson.
If you are ready to take the first step in that direction, to develop a positive attitude in your child and predetermine him for success in life, we have prepared a list of 9 safe ways to nurture the growth mindset in your children.