Afterschool Activities and Prize Culture |

Reminds me of those clubs where every member has a title because they all need to feel important and didn’t get into any other clubs.

How come it seems like every kid today is a champion for something, when we know every kid can’t be a star?…Trophies may keep kids coming back, and their parents paying, but psychological research finds that giving kids rewards for doing an activity (even something as simple as a paper certificate) means lower levels of intrinsic motivation. High levels of intrinsic motivation is precisely what we want to foster among kids to help them attain long-term success and take pride in a well-earned achievement. But the carving up of honor and the trophy culture that accompanies it has clearly gone too far: carving up honor probably doesn’t improve children’s performance or motivation — but it may mean a bigger payday for those who run childhood tournaments.

So parents need to be cautious when pursuing titles for their young kids, and make sure the honor created is for their kids, and not for reflected glory for anyone else in their children’s lives.

via Hilary Levey Friedman: Afterschool Activities and Prize Culture |

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