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Author: Subject: I need a good opinion.
Coach707
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ask.gif posted on 1.11.2008 at 11:02 AM
I need a good opinion.


Im doing research for a project that we're trying to get started here in our community, and here's the debate that this research started between myself and my mother.


Is giving a child an incentive for doing well in school counter productive?

One argument is: Giving a child a reason to achieve is better than him not having a reason, not seeing the value, and (or) not giving a damn.


Devils advocate: If a person's only motivation is incentive are they just using the means in order to get to an end? Do they only value the means because of the end? Is this destrictive thinking? Or does those things not matter in molding a child's mind when it comes to success?


Any thoughts, suggestions?




"Great spirits have often encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds"

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!AHTORB YM NOISSIM YM IS NEM LLA TCEPSER DNA EVOL WOHS OT

Of course we want to find solutions to our problems, but when what we want conflicts with what we expect, we always get what we expect, not what we want.

Im sorry, but I am all for self...... Self reverence, self knowledge, and self control.



"Some of the biggest failures in the world are those who have never failed."

"Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is why so few people do it."

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deep_thinker
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[*] posted on 1.11.2008 at 12:18 PM


I could see rewarding a child for doing exceptional, but not just for doing well.

A child only has but a few responsibilities: obey and respect your parents/elders, and do well in school.

The real world does not reward you with extra every time you fulfill your responsibilities. You pay your rent on time, you dont get kicked out. You pay your car note, you get to keep driving it. But your leasing office isnt going to take you to dinner, and your car loan company isnt going to give you a full tank to say thanks. You did what you were supposed to do.

You do well in school, you've learned some things. You can move forward to the next level and learn more things. You've done what you were supposed to do as a student. Children cannot be given the impression that rewards will come everytime they DO because then they will never want to do UNLESS there is something coming with that (what's in it for me?). That just breeds laziness and apathy.
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soulitude78
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[*] posted on 1.11.2008 at 12:32 PM


Hmmm. I have struggled with this option with my [step] son. I hesitate with an allowance for the little things he is suppose to do, because I feel like that is what you are suppose to do. In real life you don't get paid for doing what you are suppose to do, unless you have a real job, but then it isn't necessarily incentive---it's a salary.

I have said that I would reward for A's and B's $10 for each A and $5 for each B in core classes. The flip side is I said he owed us for every D and F, so he will fork over $5 per bad grade and we will save that money for him to use on things he destroys or needs and or wants for later.




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Coach707
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[*] posted on 1.11.2008 at 12:48 PM


Quote:
Originally posted by deep_thinker
I could see rewarding a child for doing exceptional, but not just for doing well.

A child only has but a few responsibilities: obey and respect your parents/elders, and do well in school.

The real world does not reward you with extra every time you fulfill your responsibilities. You pay your rent on time, you dont get kicked out. You pay your car note, you get to keep driving it. But your leasing office isnt going to take you to dinner, and your car loan company isnt going to give you a full tank to say thanks. You did what you were supposed to do.

You do well in school, you've learned some things. You can move forward to the next level and learn more things. You've done what you were supposed to do as a student. Children cannot be given the impression that rewards will come everytime they DO because then they will never want to do UNLESS there is something coming with that (what's in it for me?). That just breeds laziness and apathy.




Well all this is true and true, but we are amongst an education crisis in certain parts of the country in reference to black kids in "at risk" communities. Something must be done.... Im not saying PAY a child to go to school, but its obvious that there are a great number of kids in America who arent going to value school no matter how much counsel, tutoring, begging, pleading or whatever we decide to do.


Dont get me wrong, I traditionally felt the same way. You set a kid up for failure if his only motivation is incentive..... However, I must challenge that notion as well because in saying so, are we beating a dead horse?:deadhorse:

Why isnt learning, and growing enough for some students? And if this is true, how much more destructive is dangling a carrot on a rope in front of a mule to perscribe progress than doing nothing while high school kids read on the 5th grade level?




"Great spirits have often encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds"

W.I.N
(What's important NOW!)


!AHTORB YM NOISSIM YM IS NEM LLA TCEPSER DNA EVOL WOHS OT

Of course we want to find solutions to our problems, but when what we want conflicts with what we expect, we always get what we expect, not what we want.

Im sorry, but I am all for self...... Self reverence, self knowledge, and self control.



"Some of the biggest failures in the world are those who have never failed."

"Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is why so few people do it."

Coach
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deep_thinker
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[*] posted on 1.11.2008 at 01:29 PM


I'm not suggesting that we do nothing, Coach. And I would hardly liken our children to mules. But, children have to learn a sense of accountability and motivation for responsibilities' sake.

What I suggest we do is to instill children with a desire to learn and grow intellectually. Stimulate children mentally and show them the options that are available to them through the acquisition of a good education. Show them through practical application that what they are learning will assist them in their everyday lives. Allow them to understand that learning is its own reward.

Like I said earlier, I could see rewarding exceptional effort. As a student, if you simply complete an assignment, you've done what is required and proven comprehension of the lesson. But if you go above and beyond then I could see giving a reward, because you've done more than what was merely required and shown qualities that perhaps deserve recognition.

However, I feel that the zest for learning begins at home. Parents have to demonstrate an interest in keeping up with the lessons that the child is bringing home and assist in keeping academics in perspective. We make sure to buy plenty of educational toys so that learning isnt always looked at as this thing that keeps kids from being able to play. I've helped my goddaughter do homework frequently and I've even had her around while I'm doing my own homework so she sees that learning never really stops and that there is a value in learning at every age. Sometimes we read to them and sometimes the 6 yr old reads to us. She also made high honor roll in her first marking period, and while its easier to keep them interested when they're younger, this is what teachers and parents are tasked with doing throughout the educational years.

I think the problem is when people say, well you're going to school because you have to and thats that, without taking any interest in explaining WHY school is important and without taking any interest in WHAT goes on in school (until your kid gets suspended or someone beats him/her up) and without being involved. When YOU dont care, you cant expect your child to care.
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waterboxer
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[*] posted on 1.11.2008 at 02:02 PM


Of, course we should be rewarding the kids and giving them incentives to keep on keeping on. If, not solely because, they have to endure one of the most BULLSH!T School systems on the planet then at least because, School is their Job and we all want to get paid for our work. That's how it worked in my home. You do well in school you get paid. Lastly, the SOLE purpose for an AMERICAN EDUCATION is to get a job to pay bills. So, why not start them early on this concept instead making them believe otherwise?
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[*] posted on 1.11.2008 at 02:26 PM


Quote:
Is giving a child an incentive for doing well in school counter productive?


Different factors are at play here. A lot of Black kids aren't taught to value education nor have incentive to excel at it (parents). How are children in this situation supposed to understand the long-term payoff of doing well in school?

Incentives aren't necessarily counter-productive because that would depend on the values already instilled in each particular child. If education is stressed at home, then incentive could be reinforcing positives. Otherwise, incentives probably wouldn't work down the line anyway. It could be used to recapture a child's interest but that wouldn't last long because ultimately they'll have to decide whether doing well in school is worth it to them.
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babybear
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[*] posted on 1.17.2008 at 01:46 PM


What's the point in doing anything if there is no incentive? Everything we do has a self-serving motive attached. We go to work so we can make money to cover the expenses of both what we want and what we need. We go to school to recieve training and a piece of paper so we can have a broader range of job opportunities. We go to church to praise whatever God we serve so we can have a good after-life. The list is endless. :blah:

My point in saying all that is this: If the ADULTS in the school system need an incentive (i.e. paycheck, self-satisfaction, etc.) to Teach our children, then what makes those who are playing Devil's Advocate on this issue think that the children don't need an incentive to become interested enough in the materials to learn and absorb it? :shades:




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[*] posted on 1.17.2008 at 01:52 PM


Good Points Baby Bear! I never thought of the teaching angle you described. Also, kids aren't going to like every Subject they are taught. One child may like English, and Social Studies while, not finding much of an interest in Math and Science. So, giving them an incentive to go at Math a Science a little harder maybe needed.
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BronzeBlossom
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[*] posted on 1.19.2008 at 12:28 AM


I am torn about this issue . . . so much of what we do is already being reduced to a calculation of dollars and cents, which even themselves are devaluing. BUT, I am myself putting a relative through junior college, and will probably put some of the kids in my community through as well -- providing cold cash in order to keep them committed to the process long enough so that they reap the value of an education (which, if realized, will be incentive enough). I find that you have to help people in terms they understand, and then expand their terms . . . with our young people, this may be the most readily deployable course of action, though I confess that I am still torn about it. One can go too far -- in this world you will not always be paid monetarily or immediately in any form to do what is right, but yet and still you must do what is right, and our kids have to learn this young. But, money incentives can be structured with delayed gratification in mind . . . this will require some very mature and wise adults to carry out, and I pray we of the adult generations are up to the task.



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roarin1
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[*] posted on 1.19.2008 at 01:35 AM


MY advice would be to first---walk with the child from where HE is.

What's good for one, may not be good for another (or worse, could serve destructive.)

A 'pickle' indeed Brother COACH. However, what specifically is the project being considered for YOUR community?

(I AM chewing MY tongue as I type, because MY hope is always that OUR Children learn to survive in this life, from an Afrocentric perspective, as ultimately this how They will be viewed........any way)

Rather than ask a child....'what kind of car would YOU like to drive when YOU grow up'.....why not ask HIM to DESIGN His own?

Or the factory where it may be built?

Or the country it may be built in?

WE don't all go to school just to get a job to cover all OUR bills....to advance in education to get a better job to cover more bills.....ect; some of US WOULD make great World Leaders.

Some of US won't.

But I agree, why take a chance?

Anyhow, to 'assembly-line' OUR Children through education OR life, as a one size fits all kind of existence (as is required by conventional euro-educational 'standards,')
I have always found as one of the most barbaric practices accepted by OUR People, even though OUR History offers US another perspective........(any--way---)

Because no two Children are exactly alike.....'conventional' methods, when proven disastrous (Columbine, Va. Tech ect) it may even be easy to 'blame Ourselves' but 'WE,' may never know, because 'WE' have been denied the opportunity to consider other means......well......


just a thought.

The best to YOU.....

ROARIN.......
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