I think everybody works harder when there is a reward or "carrot" out there once you achieve it. I can understand how it might put a lot of pressure on kids from very low-income/poverty families to attain that money. Also it mentioned kids doing well on Advanced Placement tests - aren't those already the smart kids?
I agree with the Psychologists. It's not a good idea to be giving prizes, rewards, and money all the time, especially to kids. That would only be getting them used to working for something just to get something out of it, at an early age. What happened to learning and getting good grades because you want to be smart and knowledgeable? If the rewards are gone, there will be no motivation to get things done, so why do it in the first place?
Of course we should get a point! It's the NIMBY thing. Even if bribery is sort of twisted I'd like to keep the incentive thanks.Anyways, I actually watched the movie of Freakonomics today, and they had a segment called "Can You Bribe a 9th Grader to Succeed?" where they followed some kids from low income families, and the incentives fell short. (I believe it was $50 a month if you maintained above C's in all your classes and a chance to win $500 in a drawing.) The results were disappointing, and you know, it really comes back to what they call the beauty of incentives: You never know what is really going to work. So if incentives aren't working in 9th grade should you start younger, and work incentives into preschool curriculum? Or are we just fostering more instant-gratification and failed marshmallow tests? But I think it all goes back to parents and family. And right now, schools with or without incentives cannot replace that.
I think that rewarding kids is a good idea. The trick is to find the correct way to reward them. Almost everything that we do, we receive a reward. Each kid has their own thing that they want and in most cases they will work to earn it. Does it take away the work ethics that we as parents want our kids to have? Does it trick the kids into studying and doing well in their classes? Does it make parents and teachers lazy because we can wave a reward in front of their little faces instead of putting in the work to build them into hard working students? Even though I think rewards are a good idea, I also believe that it depends on the child because each child is different. Some kids work better with just a "great job", and others work better with one on one tutoring, some are just hard workers, and some require rewards for their efforts. But out of saying all the above..........I truly believe that it all starts at home with parenting.
I think that a rewards program should be more of an incentive program that, say for instance, gives educational grant points towards getting a financial grant in order to attend collage for students strapped for cash. Giving rewards gives me the impression that students are being paid to do well in school, and to me this means taking away the individual drive that students need to excell. This seems like making a business out of being a student. What if a student wants a cost of living increase in this "rewards program"? Or, these students want a "pay raise"? This could get out of hand and could decrease a students own individual drive and want to excell and better themselves in my opinion...but time , and data, will tell.
I was at first interested in writing about adding incentives for attendance and for good grades, but after seeing this, I don't think that argument will be made in my final draft.
This is a very controversial subject. In one aspect, I agree with the reward system to make students work harder. On the other hand, I feel if these rewards are implemented at an early age, the kids will automatically expect them at an older age, and if those rewards are discontinued, it may have a huge effect on the effort they put forth in learning. However, I do feel an incentive program is beneficial as I know I will post for one point!
I agree with Kristie, people do work harder when they have a reward to look forward to. This could also be funding for higher education if they made a system out of it. If the reward was cash maybe half of it could go to the student directly and the rest in a savings account for college.
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