The concept of laziness has been a topic of debate for several centuries. Despite the many advances in technology and science, the issue is still as complicated as ever. This is because there are multiple factors that affect why students become lazy and what they perceive to be the causes and problems of laziness among their peers. There is a wide range of reasons why students become lazy, from the way they are taught in schools to societal stigmas.
In addition, laziness can be defined differently depending on the person's background and personality. This reflects how difficult it is for educators to combat this issue with a one-size-fits-all solution that may or may not work. To understand this phenomenon, one must look at the factors that affect it.
Primarily, societal stigmas need to be addressed. For instance, there is a prevailing misconception that laziness equates to lack of work ethic. This ties into other societal stigmas related to race and class. People often take for granted that laziness should not be an issue in industrialized countries because it is easier for students to access resources compared to third world countries where children have more responsibilities outside of school (Kohn). The reality is that students are still lazy even in these countries with all their privileges.
Thus, students who are raised in households where having food on the table takes priority over homework will likely be less likely to value education since they never had to work hard for anything in their life. This will be reflected in their grades if they are not given the proper motivation needed to succeed.
Since students' priorities are different, it is important for educators and parents to understand them before attempting to change this behavior. As mentioned earlier, most students today do not care about schoolwork even though they have no other responsibilities outside of studying. This is because they are taught that exams are more of a formality rather than something that can determine their future success (Kohn).
Many students consider tests as hurdles that need to be overcome with minimal effort while others see them as pointless obstacles that prevent them from enjoying themselves or getting involved in more fun activities (Kohn). This mentality makes it difficult for educators to motivate their students.
Despite their lack of motivation, many students still want good grades. However, that desire is not enough to push them into doing schoolwork since they think that that they should be rewarded for putting in minimal effort. This way of thinking comes from the idea that success and work ethic are inherently tied together (Kohn). Students do not see their low grades as a result of their lackadaisical attitude towards education but as an outcome from lack of effort because they believe if they worked harder, the outcome would have been different.
In this mindset, poor grades become a self-fulfilling prophecy by demonstrating students' laziness through their actions. Since students feel entitled to good grades without trying because of societal stigmas, educators and parents must encourage them to embrace the feeling of stress and anxiety that comes with pursuing academics. These emotions will motivate students to work harder and be more engaged in their schoolwork.
Studies have shown that students today are highly stressed because of the pressures they face from parents and society to become high achievers. They feel that if they don't maintain good grades, then people will view them as inadequate or unintelligent (Kohn). This is the main reason why students are more stressed out than ever before.
To motivate themselves, students have resorted to using their mobile devices 24/7 on social media networks while doing homework. The need for constant access to the internet has only exacerbated the problem by creating distractions in their daily lives.
With all these factors combined, it is almost impossible for educators to combat student laziness unless there is some type of change within their system. Punishing students with detentions or making them retake the same class will not work when they are already accustomed to doing just enough to get by. Instead, educators need to become more involved in their students' lives and understand them better so that they can create an educational system which motivates students to embrace their academic responsibilities.