I am 21 years old and have a 12 year old brother.
What I have noticed is that he is not a nerdy kind of a student and also, he doesn't score well. I understand that not all kids are completely into studies, and I also encourage him to find his passion, but its true that he needs to be at least an average student to progress in his life (the biggest challenge is that the schools won't give him admissions on such low grades).
I know that he is 'just' a kid right now, so a long lecture on life won't help him (showing grown-ups the gruesomeness of life usually works in getting them serious and working). So, I have resorted to becoming his friend and then teaching him lessons midway their occurrence.
What troubles me the most is the possibility of him getting mislead in life. As he also considers me his best friend (the fact was secretly revealed to me through his school essay, which I had read in private), I know that I can guide him better. So, what methods should I use to help him realize his goals in life and more importantly, study better (I have constantly failed in persuading him to start reading books!)?