5 Tips To Motivate Your Teenager To Study Better

Image : Shutterstock

How to motivate teenagers to study is a common question of parents. Sometimes, teens need the motivation to focus on their studies since most of them tend to spend more time on social media, watching TV shows, or anything else other than academics.

Establishing good communication and bonding with your teen can help you explain to them the importance of studies. However, it is also necessary to approach it positively. Punishments or forceful approaches can demotivate them and make them feel misunderstood or unworthy.

If you are a parent who wants to inspire your child and get them to achieve their full potential but you are stuck on motivating your teen for studying, we bring you some interesting tips.

5 Tips To Motivate Your Teenager To Study Better

Here are a few simple things that you can do to learn how to motivate your teenager to study:

1. Empathize:

Understand how your teen feels and thinks

Image: iStock

In order to know how to motivate teenagers to study, you need to understand how he or she feels and think. You need to put yourself in his or her shoes. Teenagers are extremely emotional and sensitive. Talk and try to understand their point of view then explain yours.

  • It is important to understand why your young teenager does not want to do his or her work.
  • The best way to deal is to confront and find out what is stopping her from studying.
  • Your teenager could be inclined towards one subject and fear or not like the other.
  • Your child could be finding it difficult to cope or understand what is being taught in class.
  • Talking to your teen will help you to empathize and identify the source of the problems.

2. Get Started:

Teens usually get tired after a long day and can be lazy about doing their homework. So just telling your teenager to study will not suffice.

  • Sit with your teen and help her figure out how to go about it. Sort out tasks that she might be finding difficult.
  • You can look for a tutor who’d be willing to teach and assist your teenager with studies.
  • It’s just a slight push that your teenager needs in this phase.

3. Remember – Yelling Never Helps, Discussing Does:

Discuss calmly how studying is going to benefit your teen

Image: iStock

Scolding your teenager for the smallest of errors isn’t going to do much good. If you keep shouting at her for everything, your teen will emotionally distance herself and may stop listening to you as a sign of protest.

  • Be kind, calm and soft, but firm on your note.
  • Make her understand why you think it is necessary to study.
  • Discuss calmly how it is going to benefit her. It is a lot more effective than random yelling and long lectures.

4. Don’t Raise Expectations:

Very high expectations can constrain your teenager and make them feel pressurized

Image: Shutterstock

Don’t raise your expectations very high the first time. Often very high expectations can constrain your teenager and make her anxious and pressurized.

  • Emphasize more on a regular pattern and hard work.
  • Teach your teenager to aim for small and successive goals one at a time.
  • Teach her to set another goal once she has achieved a previous one.
  • Working through successive goals will help your teen learn and achieve more in the long run.

5. Emphasize On Extra Curricular Activities:

Encourage your teen to go out and play

Image: iStock

Make sure that your emphasis on studying does not curb creative interests and other productive activities.

  • Encourage your teen to go out and play.
  • Help her dedicate time for her various interests and hobbies.
  • Doing this will not only refresh your teenager’s mind but will also be a good investment of time into enhancing skills.


  • Motivating your teenager doesn’t mean getting her to do what you want.
  • The real trick for getting teenagers to study is through involvement, joint problem-solving and a subtle follow up for support and supervision.
  • Above all, never hesitate to compliment. Even for your teenager’s slightest achievement compliment whole-heartedly.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do you motivate an unmotivated teenager?

You may motivate your unmotivated teenager by helping them recognize their worth, making them feel competent, evoking curiosity, giving challenging tasks, praising often, maintaining a close relationship, and allowing them to explore their uniqueness (1) (2).

2. Why does my teen have no motivation?

Teenagers may lack motivation for many reasons, such as fear of failure, lack of responsibility, low self-esteem, a feeling of inadequacy, lack of ambition, and an unfavorable home environment (3) (4).

It is common for teens to indulge in activities other than studies, leaving parents wondering how to motivate teenagers to study. Some ways to help develop their interest in studies include sitting with them to have a conversation about studies, being empathetic toward their feelings and thoughts, having polite and fruitful discussions, and setting realistic goals for encouragement. Remember not to yell or discourage them, as it will negatively affect your relationship. Instead, you may motivate them and boost their confidence with positive rewards to keep them interested in studying.


MomJunction's articles are written after analyzing the research works of expert authors and institutions. Our references consist of resources established by authorities in their respective fields. You can learn more about the authenticity of the information we present in our editorial policy.
  1. How to Motivate Children: Science-Based Approaches for Parents, Caregivers, and Teachers.
  3. Alexandra L. Nickolauson; (2021); Lack of Motivation in High School Students: REACH Curriculum.
  4. Motivating the unmotivated student.
Was this article helpful?
The following two tabs change content below.

Mitha Shameer

Mitha is passionate about writing on topics related to women and children. She loves to present the brighter side of life to her readers in the form of her articles. She writes on games, stories, arts & craft, celebrations and more for MomJunction. When she isn't glued to online shopping websites, she loves reading books and watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S.

Beth Sullivan

(M.Ed in Special Education)
Beth Sullivan is an education consultant and president of Deep Roots Learning Solutions, Inc. She specializes in literacy instruction and works primarily with students learning challenges, including dyslexia, ADHD and autism. After working in schools as a special educator for more than 10 years, Beth has shifted her focus to supporting individual students and their families through online tutoring. She...
View Profile