Today I offer you the article written by Karen Brooks in our local paper. In it Karen talks about the practice, rife in our schools and in society in general, of praising our children for every tiny thing they do. She talks about the “all must have a prize” attitude and its long term impact on children.
i remember having to award a “student of the week” certificate when I was a classroom teacher. There was no option here, someone had to be the student of the week, and over the school year every class member had to receive a certificate. By the end of term one, the kids who had already received an award lost enthusiasm for the prize. By the start of fourth term, a betting game on who was to the recipient of the week had started, because the kids knew who was yet to receive one and were able to figure out the odds. Great maths activity but not the point of the exercise. The award had lost all its meaning very quickly.
Like Karen Brooks, I believe that praise should be earned and that by providing our children with false feedback we are doing them a dis-service.
Read the article. I would be interested to read your thoughts.