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Author Topic: How to raise smart kids  (Read 1248 times)

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Offline VekseidTopic starter

How to raise smart kids
« on: December 01, 2007, 02:22:37 AM »
The Secret to Raising Smart Kids

Quote from: article
Hint: Don't tell your kids that they are. More than three decades of research shows that a focus on effort—not on intelligence or ability—is key to success in school and in life

By Carol S. Dweck

A brilliant student, Jonathan sailed through grade school. He completed his assignments easily and routinely earned As. Jonathan puzzled over why some of his classmates struggled, and his parents told him he had a special gift. In the seventh grade, however, Jonathan suddenly lost interest in school, refusing to do homework or study for tests. As a consequence, his grades plummeted. His parents tried to boost their son’s confidence by assuring him that he was very smart. But their attempts failed to motivate Jonathan (who is a composite drawn from several children). Schoolwork, their son maintained, was boring and pointless.

Our society worships talent, and many people assume that possessing superior intelligence or ability—along with confidence in that ability—is a recipe for success. In fact, however, more than 30 years of scientific investigation suggests that an overemphasis on intellect or talent leaves people vulnerable to failure, fearful of challenges and unwilling to remedy their shortcomings.

The result plays out in children like Jonathan, who coast through the early grades under the dangerous notion that no-effort academic achievement defines them as smart or gifted. Such children hold an implicit belief that intelligence is innate and fixed, making striving to learn seem far less important than being (or looking) smart. This belief also makes them see challenges, mistakes and even the need to exert effort as threats to their ego rather than as opportunities to improve. And it causes them to lose confidence and motivation when the work is no longer easy for them.

Praising children’s innate abilities, as Jonathan’s parents did, reinforces this mind-set, which can also prevent young athletes or people in the workforce and even marriages from living up to their potential. On the other hand, our studies show that teaching people to have a “growth mind-set,” which encourages a focus on effort rather than on intelligence or talent, helps make them into high achievers in school and in life.

... (continues)

Offline kongming

Re: How to raise smart kids
« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2007, 02:57:29 AM »
I'd agree with that. I never had to study in the early years, getting straight As and maybe a B here and there, and was told that I was smart. It also annoyed me to see the "dumb" kids get rewarded for any success, whereas it was just expected for me. Then came grade 9-10, and suddenly it wasn't a piece of piss. In fact, I wasn't *able* to learn the math stuff. I didn't know *how* to study, and doing homework didn't seem to do any good either. Combined with being shoved into the advanced classes for everything due to being so smart, by grades really took a hit.

As far as my education goes, I think my parents actually managed to do everything wrong.

Offline Sherona

Re: How to raise smart kids
« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2007, 08:43:25 AM »
I suffered from adhd as a child (though at the time it was just considered I was a bad this is before ADD and the riddilin bandwagon) But since my daughter has sever adhd (she is medicated and takes behavior therapy) I look at her symptoms and recognize that was exactly how i was as a child. As an adult I have Adult ADD and while i dont take medication for it I have lived with it so long I hae learned the various tricks to keep my mind from wandering (Writing helps tremendously, as well as post it notes evvvvvery where).

As a child I had a horrible time in grade school all the way through 8th grade. I would have notes sent home about how I wouldnt sit still, how I was constantly moving around, how I kept forgetting the assignments due ect ect. It wasn't until my high school years that I started to buckle down (I started to get the maturity to realize what was going on and started to be able to develope tricks and tips to help focus myself) suddenly after 9th grade they shoved me in AP English courses..>.> Yeah..look at any of my stories and anyone can see I barely know the rudiments of english.

That is because in Kentucky they put through KERA and basically I am not sure what it was suppose to do to help the education system but it completely screwed me over. After seventh grade not a drop of grammar was taught it was focused on creative writing due to the need for a proficient writing portfolio to graduate. I moved to Louisiana in the middle of my senior year, after coasting through three ap english classes, and was stuck in ap english four there..which was a major eye opener. I struggled so hard in that class because everyone else had been studying and learning sentance structure and knew more then just basic nouns, verbs, and so forth.

the point being, this article (which I have read the other day and found it facinating) actualy does hit quite on the money. It's one thing to build your child's self confidence, and it is not by no means saying that you should never praise your child, but don't tell them they are smart just..for breathing. I make sure I praise my daughter for every A she brings home, but I also dont belittle her when she brings home a lower grade. I sit her down, talk to her and find out why she got a lower grade..theres usually a pretty good reason a child is struggling, and talking to them without judging is a perfect way of finding that reason and working ways to work through it.

Offline Elvi

Re: How to raise smart kids
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2007, 04:43:15 AM »
My way is simple....
I have told Beast girl that no matter what grade she gets, or how much she thinks she has 'failed', as long as she can honestly say that she has done her best, then I am extremely proud of her.

Beasty gets helped, not pushed.
We praise her for the small steps she takes and encourage her in the things she likes and is good at.

Offline Kradorex Xeron

Re: How to raise smart kids
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2007, 01:33:33 PM »
Generally, I don't think in this day and age that "static education" is working for these special cases.

It is sending the students the wrong message, "that everyone must be the same" and "nobody is permitted to be above their grade level", it is utterly destroying the students abilities due to the fact they feel it is pointless and that their abilities are worthless as they cannot fully utilize them to their full potential. because of the formentioned "everyone must be the same".

Plus, awards (such as academic) that have areas that are artbitarily set (math, english, sports, etc) are also causing students problems, since these awards assume nobody has non-acedemic, non-athletic abilities that would earn them alot of success in life. Why not encorage them, show them their abilities are worth something early, have them use the abilities instead of letting them rot like unused muscle?
« Last Edit: December 05, 2007, 01:35:00 PM by Kradorex Xeron »

Offline Methos

Re: How to raise smart kids
« Reply #5 on: March 14, 2008, 01:52:59 PM »
There was actually a study done recently that I recall seeing in the news that analyzed why the Finnish education system was producing superior results to others. As I recall the essence of it was that Finnish parents and their education system instilled a love of reading in the children. Naturally those whom are literate and will seek to independently educate themselves are going to learn more aptly. So I supose if you wish to raise smart children seeking to ensure they appreciate and enjoy books is likely a wise step.

Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: How to raise smart kids
« Reply #6 on: March 15, 2008, 10:42:21 PM »
I can kind of relate.  Grade school was so easy for me that I never studied.  The only problems I ran into were when teachers started grading my homework seriously and I never did it.  I just didn't want to waste my time with it and I always got As on the tests.  Highschool was harder and I struggled some, didn't make so many As and mostly was a B student.  Didn't bother me because college was pretty easy, except for some classes.  Those particular classes required alot more studying and I found that I didn't know how to study.  I look around me and everyone else has little tricks.  Highlighting this, using tape recorders for this and post it notes all over their textbooks.  I was so used to just listening to the lecture one time, that buying the textbook was new for me.  Now that I'm in nursing school and studying is a set requirement, I'm struggling so much just to understand how to study.  I know that sounds dumb, but I really don't get it. 

Anyway, the other point here was to say that a study was done about reading at home.  Kids with parents who actively read as a past time and who encouraged their children to do so as well did far better than those that did not.  Alot of this was tied into the children looking for educational rescources outside of school and also during their breaks.  Children that did not have ready access to books or who had parents that did not encourage them outside of class, fell behind significantly during periods when school is not in session.  I think the study said that by the sixth grade, these children are so far behind that catching up is near impossible.  I wish I could find the research, but it was something an instructor brought up in passing.