Dad Podcast

Should We Reward Kids For Good Grades? Dudes To Dads Ep 146
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I was talking to another parent that was explaining the different amounts of money their child gets depending on their grades.  $20 for this, $10 for this, etc.

Have you ever been rewarded for your grades?  either money or a gift?

Parents will often use reward charts to shape behavior.  To me it’s like a rat with cheese.  What happens if there is no cheese?  The rat ain’t going in that direction.

This is the same problem with reward charts.  Have you ever seen sticker charts and you get a star if you do this?  A sticker if you do that?

You totally are removing the intrinsic value of accomplishing something.  The child does not learn the true value of the accomplishment.  Whether that is completing a task, reaching a goal, helping someone, or whatever.  These are all things that happen inside.  Reward is external.

With grade, the reward is the grade, not anything else.  You got the A.  That is your reward.

There has been numerous studies where children were provided money for results.  There were no significant changes in performance.

Money does not buy long term success.  It is a short term solution.

Here are a couple of ways we can help kids with grades:

Focus on effort not grade – Highlight the hard work rather than grade itself
Limit screen time – must get work done before playing
Encourage reading – find topics they enjoy
Help but don’t do – you are there for support but not doing work for them
Let them fail 
– Missing homework, assignments, etc.
Positive re-inforcement – Doing homework, reading

So please parents, do not pay your kids for doing well in school.  Their reward is doing well in school.  What about that child who simply isn’t as smart as the others?  For them , getting a C does take effort.  Do we reward the effort?  That was a trick question, we don’t reward the effort.

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