It is one of life’s great truths that success in almost any arena comes from effort, not just ability.
We must make sure our children know that “smart” is not something you simply are. “Smart” is something everyone must work hard to achieve.
Too many people believe that success in school is mostly a factor of inborn intelligence and aptitude. But the fact is that children who work hard at a subject often learn more than very bright students who don’t put in the effort.
The message carries over to the rest of a child’s life as well.
Certainly all students are born with different aptitudes and abilities. But the true key to success is how they use the strengths they have, and how they work to overcome any shortfalls.
Even the most gifted athlete can’t be a winner without training hard every day. Even the greatest artists need to study their craft.
The highest achievers, inside and outside the classroom, are those who work the hardest and do the most with the gifts they have.
Parents can help motivate children by telling them that success in school really is something everyone can achieve. It is not beyond anyone’s grasp.
But it requires effort, attention, and hard work. It requires listening carefully in the classroom, asking questions, completing all assignments, and studying hard. It also requires an honest awareness of where weaknesses lie, and a determination to overcome those weaknesses.
Students who take this approach are truly smart.