How to Get Your Teen to Take Accountability

My Ideal College shares ways to help your teen take accountability.

My son woke up and said with a sigh, “It’s the last day of summer vacation.” Then he followed up with, “thank God for weekends.”

As a parent, I am a little sad that summer break is over. I like being able to spend time together and the flexible schedule summer provides.

But I can’t lie, I am glad they are going back. I do enjoy the fact that they are learning new things they can share around the dinner table. They are involved in after school activities that help them discover and expand their interests.

Another bonus with school starting is my food bill will go back down from not having to feed my always hungry teenage boys.

The start of a new school year is like when we watch the ball drop on December 31st. It’s a new year, a time to reflect on the past and determine what your teenager wants to achieve this school year.

We have a discussion with our boys right before the school year starts to help them figure this out. Of course, they say they want to get good grades. But they need to take it one step further to the specific action steps that will help them take accountability and achieve their goals.

We ask our sons these questions to help them figure this out:

  • What worked well for you last year in getting good grades?
  • What didn’t work well for you last year in getting good grades?
  • What specific activities or habits should you stop because they prevent you from getting good grades?
  • What specific activities or habits should you keep doing because they help you get good grades?

These questions are a simple and effective way for your teen to reflect on experiences and decide what things they want to change in order to move forward. It provides them with a level of ownership and accountability for their own success.

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