Helping children learn

} If too much supervision is as bad as not enough,
how can parents help children study?
By giving them tips and hints for learning, also called
cognitive strategies. A cognitive strategy is a kind of
“trick” we consciously apply to attain a learning goal, a
mental maneuver that we use in order to learn some-
thing. For example, when given someone’s telephone
number, we can recite the digits to ourselves using a
rhythm that helps us remember them, or when someone
is telling us a good joke, imagine ourselves telling it to
someone else. Another example is imagining pictures in
our heads, repeating words read or heard in class, or
recalling a past situation and our own actions, sensations
or emotions, and talking to ourselves about these pictures
or creating new ones. In short, cognitive strategies are
techniques that allow us to open drawers in our minds
that are full of words, images and sensations. They play
a vital role in “learning how to learn.”
} Can parents help children “learn how to learn”?
Parents cannot expect children to learn in exactly the
same way as they do themselves. However, they can help
their sons and daughters use their intelligence more
efficiently by making them aware of their own ways of
learning, their “learning tools”, and suggest further strat-
egies. The more strategies children know, the better
equipped they are to solve problems, which in turn 
osters their intellectual initiative and independence. It
is as if you were giving them extra strings to use in ying
their kite; if they drop one, they have others to resort to,
and rarely find themselves with none at all. This helps
children become mentally active and fully involved in
their problem-solving.
Parents who play this guiding role, helping children
“learn how to learn”, positively influence their children’s
performance at school and make it possible for them to
enjoy doing schoolwork. There is an old Chinese proverb
that expresses the usefulness of “learning how to learn”:
«Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach a man
to fish and he will eat for a lifetime.
From : 
Homework and Studying

Auteur(s): Béliveau, Marie-Claude

Editeur: Editions du CHU Sainte-Justine