Are you in the camp of parents who believe that all children should win sports awards whether they win or lose? I understand that by giving participation awards we are celebrating the effort rather than the victory. Forgive me, though, if I offend you with my view here. I personally don’t agree with the practice.
That said, I was recently moved by an article titled: To the Parents of the Kids Who Aren’t Going to Get an Award. Fair warning, it may break your heart a little.
If you don’t wish to be reminded of how many children aren’t being celebrated for their endurance, their will and determination, and their incredible survival skills, I recommend that you don’t read it.
Here’s one part, however, that I believe may hit home the most.
“There should be an award for the kids who try so incredibly, fantastically hard to get right with 1,000 tries what other kids master with ease — zippers, math facts, the alphabet, behavior in the lunch room, geometry, how to make eye contact, ways to keep a friend.”
~ Sara Borgstede
This I agree with.
Instead of watching kids give up on themselves because they try and fail and try and fail and try and then hear the adults in their lives say “try harder,” let’s find more ways to encourage perseverance.
Today’s free printable includes a Perseverance Award. Use it in the classroom or, if you don’t want to create your own award ceremony at home, try out the Perseverance Tickets.
I’ve included Perseverance Tickets that you may use however you choose.
● Use them to remind your child, “I see you. That was difficult but you didn’t give up.”
● Use them as reinforcement tools to keep going.
● Use them as incentive tickets. Children can trade x number of earned perseverance tickets in exchange for a prize or treat.
If your child has already been beaten down by learning challenges long enough, the urge to quit anything remotely difficult may be strong. But parents, please take heart.
While it may look like a lot like laziness or lack of motivation, your child is likely waging some very legitimate internal battles. It’s our job to help kids overcome this lack of faith in one’s abilities, and to help them resist the urge to stop trying at all.
I believe that Perseverance Tickets are one great way to help with that effort.
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