I was walking Eden, my ten year old daughter, to school this morning half an hour ahead of the rest of the family because of an 8.15am extra maths session.
Was this a punishment? A chore? A drag-your-feet, wish-you-weren’t-there experience? Nope – the absolute opposite.
Eden was bouncing along the road, and had been bouncing round the house for at least an hour before we left. She was excited….about extra maths!
What makes this really interesting for me, and worthy of a blog, is that just a few weeks ago she was ‘rubbish at maths’ and regularly told us how much she disliked it. When it came to maths homework, motivation was seriously low.
Then it changed, literally overnight.
One day at school there came a Maths test in an area that she was ok at. She did well. She felt good. The teacher praised her. She felt encouraged. She liked that feeling and she set a goal to go one mark better (out of 20) next time. So she worked at her homework and achieved her goal. Suddenly, she loves maths, is doing loads better at it, motivation is sky high and her attitude has been transformed.
This morning’s early start was for a special invitation maths club for the super-keen!
Proud parental gushing aside (sorry about that!), this is such a lesson in how attitudes, motivation and results can be similarly transformed. Set yourself and others up for some small success, celebrate that success, set another goal. Achieve that goal…and so on.
Sounds over-simplistic I know, but it works. Sometimes it takes longer to see drastic change, but sometimes there really is an immediate impact. Either way, set goals, celebrate every small success and keep on going!