Summer is a great time to catch up on reading, and Berkeley Math Coach Rebecca Burke suggests parents take a look at this piece out recently in the Atlantic: 100 Percent Is Overrated – People labeled “smart” at a young age don’t deal well with being wrong. Life grows stagnant.
Here’s the first two paragraphs to pique your interest:
At whatever age smart people develop the idea that they are smart, they also tend to develop vulnerability around relinquishing that label. So the difference between telling a kid “You did a great job” and “You are smart” isn’t subtle. That is, at least, according to one growing movement in education and parenting that advocates for retirement of “the S word.”
The idea is that when we praise kids for being smart, those kids think: Oh good, I’m smart. And then later, when those kids mess up, which they will, they think: Oh no, I’m not smart after all. People will think I’m not smart after all. And that’s the worst. That’s a risk to avoid, they learn.“Smart” kids stand to become especially averse to making mistakes, which are critical to learning and succeeding…