5 Easy Steps to help Careless Children: No nagging needed!

Carelessness is known as the silent killer in exams. It can be the one thing that trips children from passing to failing, or barely missing out on an A. But, don’t worry! Here are 5 easy steps you can take to help your child avoid careless mistakes!

1.     Identify the cause

Before fixing a problem, you must understand what you are dealing with. You can first go through the question to see if your child fully understands the meaning of the words. If they do not understand the meaning, they may not grasp what is required from the question. Besides, you should get your child to show the methods they use to solve the questions and check whether they used it correctly. Perhaps they understand the question but do not know how to answer it by using the proper method. Sometimes, children may have gotten the right answers but just do not know the proper way of presenting the answer. Thus, it is important to uncover the cause to enlighten the child, instead of simply dismissing it as a careless mistake, which might demotivate them or instill a dislike towards the subject or topic. 

2. Provide a conducive space for learning

Believe it or not, an impactful learning environment is meant to help your child center their attention with the lessons on hand. When your child is in a colourful and educational space, they tend to sharpen their focus, increase their creativity, and boost their motivation to learn. However, distractions in the learning space are counterproductive. Mobile phones, tablets, television, computers, pets, and even parents who nag can drive their child to distraction. Once the attention is divided, your child is prone to careless errors. Here’s one thing to keep in mind though, some children can focus more on their homework with some gentle music or background noise as they are used to learning in a busy classroom.

3. Inculcate a sense of responsibility

Start off by letting your little one help you in simple household chores until they learn to clean up their own messes. As they are raised with the expectation that they must clean up their own messes, this will make them realise that careless mistakes are bad. This habit will also go a long way in making them responsible and conscious of their duties to avoid careless mistakes. In addition, a to-do list or a checklist is also a way to prevent mistakes from happening. Just take a piece of paper and ask your child what they need to get done. Once everything is written down, they can follow the list and act according to the steps. It is important to include every detail in order not to skip anything that could cause a problem. Again, bear in mind that children will learn to be responsible faster if your approach is positive and light-hearted instead of nagging or blaming them when they make mistakes.

4. Assign tasks one after another

With this, you can help your child to prioritise and focus on the task instead of rushing to get things done. Nothing good comes out when we are in a rush. So, it is also better not to let your child multitask as this would make them jump between tasks, and thus divert their attention. Distractions will make children prone to mistakes, hence lowering their productivity. Guide your little one to start their day with the smallest and simplest task, and finish on those that are most difficult. Or the other way, begin with the task that requires lots of energy and leave those less important ones for later. This will help your child become more attentive when doing homework, thus minimising carelessness.

5. Get your child into mental arithmetic

In a nutshell, careless mistakes originate from a lack of concentration and patience. The good news is, your child can improve both skills through mental arithmetic! Performing mental arithmetic requires immense focus. As your child progresses to advanced levels, there will be more numbers involved, and the place-values will increase as well and if your child’s attention is divided, the answers derived will turn out wrong. Therefore, a better concentration means lesser careless mistakes! Children with a mental arithmetic background tend to exhibit an efficient work ethic and are less likely to make careless mistakes, resulting in a boost of confidence and self-esteem. Imagine your child performing accurate calculations at the snap of a finger, you will definitely see them smile from ear to ear.

Like with anything else, there needs to be constant practice before one can master the art of avoiding careless mistakes. We encourage you to help your little ones to combat carelessness through these steps, and you will see improvements along the way. Once again, nagging does not work! Not sure how to guide? Join us at Wekie Arithmetic! Our educators have years of experience and are internationally recognised to guide your children to be more focused and attentive through mental arithmetic.