And there’s no question that reward systems work.

But when the rewards stop, sometimes the good behavior stops, too. That’s especially important to remember when it comes to studying. Researchers have found that students who are motivated only by the desire to get a good grade rarely do more than the minimum they need to get by.

However, when students are motivated by an inner reward, they are more likely to stick with a task. Students with inner motivation learn because they’re curious. They retain what they have learned longer, and they earn higher grades.

Here’s how to help your child develop this inner motivation:

• Start with his interests. Before he works on a project, have him think about what he wants to learn.

• Help him see progress as he works on a big task.

• Help your child share what he’s learning.

• Give positive feedback, but encourage him to praise himself for a job well done.

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