Why Do Children Lose Interest in School And What To Do

(Last Updated On: February 22, 2023)
Table of Contents
    Add a header to begin generating the table of contents

    There are many reasons why children lose interest in school. Here are some of the most common reasons, along with ways to help them out. Some kids may not be interested in the subject matter they are learning about, or they might have a hard time understanding what's being taught because it is too difficult for them.  

    Others may just want more freedom and less structure than traditional schooling can offer.  Whatever the reason, there are things you can do to keep your child engaged in school until graduation day!

    Many children lose interest in school and are less motivated to do well. What's the reason for their lack of motivation?  The answer is simple, they don't know what success feels like! They need to be taught at an early age that there is no "failure" but rather learning opportunities. 

    Since children are naturally curious and want to learn, what is causing them to lose interest in school? I'm a Parenting Coach who helps motivated parents with kids that have lost interest.  In this blog post, you'll find the answers to why children have lost interest in school and tips for getting them back on track.  

    This article discusses how important it is for parents to understand their child's needs before they can help them succeed academically. Parents will also learn about how having an academic plan can motivate students, so they don't disengage from learning. So keep reading!

    It's our responsibility as parents or guardians to help them through this process by providing support and encouragement while teaching them how to find solutions on their own. If you're interested in finding out more about this topic, please keep reading below.  This blog post will provide information on why children lose interest in school and what you can do about it!

    Why Do Children Lose Interest in School?

    Why do children lose interest in school, and what can we do about it as parents and teachers? Apparently, our new Federal Minister for Education, Mr Christopher Pyne, wants to return to fact-based learning. When I read this line, I felt like crying – but then I consoled myself, perhaps he’d been misquoted.

    After all, how could a man involved in the foundation of Headspace get the concept of learning in the 21st century so wrong. No, there must be some mistake. 

    Surely our new minister realises life beyond the school gates requires more than facts, competition and high stakes testing. He must know our children need the tools of learning. But, they also need the confidence, flexibility and proactive attitude to use those tools. And, they need to know who they are,  where they are and where they want to go.

    Perhaps this is why too many of our teenagers lose interest in school. They lose interest in school because they don’t know where it will lead. They can’t see the relevance of their classes.

    Now, this doesn’t mean the classes are irrelevant. Instead, it means that the students haven’t had the opportunity to understand themselves and their goals. Since they haven’t developed personal awareness, they struggle to find personal relevance, and without an ability to see the value in learning, it is difficult to learn self-regulation and self-motivation.

    So, how can we as parents and teachers help our kids stay interested in school?

    Not by doing what we’ve done before – not by throwing money at all things bright and shiny. Not by following some big technology splurge. Not by returning to the good ol’ days of facts and rote memory. Not by testing and measuring. Not by cramming an already crowded curriculum with one-off feel-good programs. 

    We need a valuable approach.

    We can help our kids stay interested in school by moving toward opportunity. We can help them recognise the relevance and value of school by giving them the chance to get to know themselves better.


    By allowing them to learn how to recognise their own thoughts, emotions, values and dreams. By supporting their search for a place within societies fabric.  And by giving them the tools of learning – critical, creative and emotional literacy and functional numeracy.

    These skills need to be embedded into the curriculum. They need to be as day-to-day as morning recess. The wonderful news is they can be, and it doesn’t require adding to the curriculum. It simply requires a different way of looking at things. If we focus on the students and what they need, facts become relevant. 

    I’d love to know what you think? How could you use the facts you know to help a teenager learn more about themselves? How can you help them see the personal relevance of facts? I do it through stories.


    How to Make Your Child Interested in Studying

    As parents, we expect our children to do well in all spheres of life. However, we may put our child under the burden of unnecessary expectations. These expectations may sometimes create an aversion from studies. Therefore, what should you do to encourage your child to study without causing a protest? The following article explains how to make your child interested in studying.

    In today’s world where everyone wishes to excel, we, as parents, also face undue stress to encourage our kids to study well and perform well in academics too. We will discuss the best ways of encouraging children to learn and study:

    Sit With Your Kid

    The best thing that you can do as a parent to motivate your kid to study is sitting with him when he sits for studying. However, refrain from using your mobile or laptop. Instead, do your pending office work or read a book.

    Lay Stress on Learning and Not Grades

    Though good grades are important to score, if your kid is struggling with getting good grades, it will be a good idea to shift his focus to learning. Ask him about day to day activities in the class and what he learnt in the class.

    Be on Your Kid’s Side

    Do not put pressure on your kid to score well or get better grades. Instead, be nice and gentle with him and try and understand things from his perspective. Try to make your kid responsible for his studies positively, as any negativity may make a rebel out of him, which could make him relent and defy you.

    Discuss Studies

    Talk to the kid about what he did in every subject in the class on each day. Asking him about it will keep him more alert in the class. Know about his favourite subject, favourite class and favourite teacher too.

    Make a Study Schedule

    Anything that is followed and done systematically always yields a positive outcome, and the same goes for studies. Therefore, make a schedule and adhere to it. Studying does not require doing homework only rather, you should keep time for revising the concepts and lessons taught in the class on each day.

    Create Environment for Studying

    Make sure there are no distractions such as loud noises, television, and another sibling playing etc., in the close vicinity of where your child sits for studying. A child has an extremely low attention span and may get easily distracted and loses interest in studies.

    Talk to the Teacher

    If you notice that your child has bad grades in a particular subject or is hesitant to study a subject, you may get in touch with the concerned teacher. Together, the teacher and the parents can make strategies to develop a kid’s interest in that subject or improve the grades.

    Follow Your Kid’s Learning Style

    You must understand what kind of a learner your kid is, and that is, auditory, visual or kinesthetic. Then, you may adopt a study schedule based on your kid’s preference.

    Make Study Goals Together

    It is a good idea to set achievable goals and can be achieved with dedication and hard work. For example, you may make short term, medium-term and long term studying goals with your kid so that he stays motivated and also can track his progress.

    Listen to Their Opinion

    It is very important to listen and respect your child’s opinions even if, at times, you feel he is incorrect. Letting your kid voice his opinion on various subjects helps to build his confidence. Tell your kid to give proper reasoning for his arguments as well.

    Help Them Learn From Failure

    Failures are a part of life and are not the end of the world. Even if your kid gets low grades, refrain from scolding or comparing him to his friends or peers. He may already be feeling too low. Instead, encourage and empathise with your kid and tell him it is okay to make mistakes and learn from them.

    Make Your Child More Involved

    It will be a good idea to involve your kid into buying his studying material like the study table, stationery, the table cover or many other things that your kid associates with studying. This way, your kid feels more involved, and this may trigger his interest in studying too.

    Refrain From Lecturing Your Child

    All parents want to protect and do the best for their children. But, unfortunately, this may often lead to lecturing their kids about what is right and what is wrong with them. Refrain from doing this, as too much verbal bashing may eventually lead to disinterested kids. Instead, give crisp and clear instruction to your kid rather than scolding, manipulating or threatening them.

    Acknowledge All Achievements

    Everyone likes a pat on his back every now and then, and so do the kids. Therefore, you must acknowledge and appreciate even the smallest achievement of your kid. This not only makes him happy but keeps him motivated to do well.

    Reading Habit

    You must instil a reading habit in your kid. It is often seen that kids who enjoy usually reading like studying too. You may lead by example and create a conducive environment in your house, or even better, you may make a reading schedule.

    Be Firm and Disciplined

    Being disciplined and firm in your teaching ways are suggested. Though that does not mean that you become manipulative and demanding. The key is to strike the perfect balance is to create a positive and conducive studying atmosphere at home.

    Refrain From Bribing Your Child

    Appreciation and reward are positive aspects of teaching good studying habits in a child. However, you should avoid bribing your kid. This may solve a problem temporarily and may not interest your kid to study with passion.

    Try Storytelling


    You may develop your kid’s interest in studying by constructive storytelling. For example, you may tell him moral stories that lay stress on the importance of studies and education in life.

    Make Study Time a Fun Time

    Parents often make a mistake by punishing their children and then telling them to study. Children assume that it is their parent’s way of punishing them. You can make study time a fun time and tell your kid’s to enjoy it. Spend more time studying together rather than leaving your kid alone in the room for studying.,

    Help Your Kid

    Help your kid whenever he requires it or gets stuck up somewhere with his lessons. Do not get angry if he asks to clear his doubt a number of times. Instead, be patient and gentle with your kid’s doubts and queries.

    Do not let your kid feel tensed or stressed while studying, as this attitude may make him despise studying altogether. Instead, encourage and pep up your child’s morale and confidence at every stage for him to come out as a go-getter.

    What to Do When My Kid Doesn’t Want to Study?

    Every child is unique, and hence every child needs a different environment to reach his potential. But, unfortunately, when everyone around us seems to be a competition, living in the times today, it becomes tough to lift the excess burden to study rigorously. Even adults face such kind of pressure in day to day life, whether it’s about office performance or keeping up with social media.

    Similarly, kids today are also surrounded by various forms. There is constant pressure on them to perform better in every aspect. Some kids are blessed with the right concentration and learning skills, and hence they find it easy to learn more. While in other cases, this constant pressure on some kids often drifts them away from studies. They find it hard to focus and don’t want to study. But the question arises on how to develop an interest in studies?

    Education in the initial years of learning plays a crucial role in the holistic development of a child. Most of the right habits and social etiquettes are formed in these foundational years. But what to do when the poor concentration skills of your kid take over his initial learning experience, and your kid doesn’t want to study?

    This can become a significant concern during good parenting. But what to do to enhance a child’s desire or motivate the child and his ability to learn? Well, as they say, nothing is impossible for parents. However, there are always some proactive steps that you can take to help your kid develop better study habits and learning skills.

    Tips for When a Child Doesn’t Want to Study

    Acceptance Before Expectations

    As parents and facts of good parenting, we have a lot of expectations and hopes from our children. Of course, we want them to be happy, healthy, and prosperous in every aspect of their life. But make sure that your expectations don’t act as an unnecessary burden on your child. 

    If he is not good at studies, accept it, and make yourself comfortable. This will motivate your child to work harder. Define your idea of success with them and make them enjoy learning without burdening them. This will give you answers to how to develop an interest in studies.

    Look Out Of Their Interests

    Education or learning ideas are different for every individual, but the learning environment that we provide is relatively rigid. They go to school, study, follow a scheduled timetable, do specific assignments, learn certain topics, and get promoted based on their performance. But maybe, this is not working for your child. 

    If he finds doing chores boring and shows no interest in the topics taught in school, expand your approach by considering his topics of interest. For instance, if your kid gets excited about planets or animals or nature, or if your child likes to listen to stories and respond well to them? Figure out their interests and take time out to pursue them. This will engage your child in learning more about such subjects, and he will end up attaining better focus.

    Encourage Their Curiosity

    Curiosity is like kids. They are always curious about everything that surrounds them. Their growing years are all about what, why, and how. Because of good parenting, you can harness their curiosity, motivate children, and give it the right direction. 

    Provide them with the freedom to find answers on their own. Allow them to wonder about topics independently. Answer their question with a question. This will engage your kid’s mind, and he will be curious to study more things. Don’t get irritated over your child’s tendency to ask, “why?” Always answer with patience.

    De-Emphasize School

    School is the centre point of learning in the initial years of your child, but it should not be the end-all of learning. So don’t get disheartened over the school performance or teacher’s review of your child’s account. 

    If your child doesn’t like studies, there are chances that his performance at school will not be satisfactory. This is because every child needs a different environment to thrive. Traditional methods of schooling do not need to be enough to engross your child into learning.

    Give your children the freedom to follow their interests. Handle their test anxiety patiently and avoid taking an angry approach. This will divert them further from studies.

    Make Studying Enjoyable

    Kids follow things that seek their interest. Ask them to study with the help of diagrams or cartoon pictures. Draw mind maps or thought charts. Please provide them with coloured pens and encourage them to enjoy their studies. Be creative to attract their attention to reviews. This will help them in enjoying the process rather than avoiding it. Follow good parenting and know the difference.

    Learning Together 

    Just like the family eats together, celebrates together, make sure to learn together. Read exciting books, watch documentaries on exciting subjects, go to museums and the zoo. Show enthusiasm towards learning new things and explore education tools, and your child will follow you. 

    Minimize distractions 

    Technology resides with us. From the time we wake up till the time we hit the bed, we are surrounded by technology. And since kids form habits quickly, they often get attracted to these gadgets. They like playing video games over the phone or TV consoles; they like watching movies and browsing the internet. 

    Keep an eye on their screen time and pay attention to such habits. Make sure that your kid doesn’t spend much time on mobile phones. Minimize distractions to help them focus on their study.

    Stay Positive 

    Focus on the strengths of your child rather than weaknesses. Promote a positive learning approach that emphasizes on capabilities. If your child is not interested in a particular subject, find another way to seek his interests. For instance, if your kid is weak at maths, follow approaches that are different from the traditional ones. 

    Watch videos on the internet, or teach them while playing or buying them chocolates. Similarly, if your kid is interested in language ad writing, encourage him or her to learn more about it. This will promote progress, and your child will develop a sense of self-belief that will lead him to seek other realms of knowledge too.

    Don’t Shy Away From Seeking Professional Help

    As we have said before, every child is unique, and their needs differ accordingly. Therefore, while it is entirely okay to feel distaste towards school and education, but in some cases, there can be more than meets the eye. 

    Some children struggle with learning disabilities that make things more difficult for them. If you feel that your child is showing traits of some disabilities, consider seeking professional help as soon as possible. Disabilities like attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and dyslexia are common in children, but they are manageable. Get your child the desired treatment and help him develop their learning skills.

    If they believe learning is generally fast and easy (and should not be slow or arduous), they may lose motivation when they encounter challenges. Similarly, if they believe intelligence is something you do or do not have, but not something you acquire over time, they may not see the point of extra effort.

    Mental health issues — Teen stress, depression or ADHD could be impacting your son's life. Having him evaluated by a mental health professional may be needed if you suspect any of the above. Substance abuse — Drug or alcohol abuse may also be a factor when a teen loses interest in school.

    Another apparent reason for not studying is that they undergo laziness, and due to this, they cannot focus and lose attention in studies. They lead to sleep or nap while learning, and this wastes their study time.


    • Dr. Olga Abeysekera

      Olga has a PhD in Management from Monash University. Her research focused on how personal differences and social networking impact creativity in the tech industry. She has extensive teaching experience at universities and private tutoring centers, praised for her engaging methods and clear insights. Olga also writes for top academic journals and creates innovative programs that enhance skills and consulting methods. She believes in the power of education to inspire ongoing growth in both studies and careers.

    Scroll to Top
    Get a Personalised Tutoring Quote    
    Get a Personalised Tutoring Quote