YOUR GRADES ARE FOR YOU, NOT FOR ME.
What prompted my post today was part of a radio interview I heard this morning with the title: The Blessing of a B minus, by Wendy Mogel Ph.D. I happened to turn on my radio when she talked about how many parents expect their kids to get straight A’s, be on the varsity team, put in ridiculous hours of community service, belong to numerous clubs, and of course, it doesn’t hurt to be slender and good looking, all in the hopes of getting admitted to a great college.
Mogel’s book, which I have not read, is based on Jewish teachings, but that was not the focus of my post. I was interested in what she had to say about, not every kid fits the mold, and parents should not expect the same for each kid. I know that many parents want their kids to excel in Academics, but it really is a pity that we do not seem to value other professions, such as trade schools as much.
As a child, one of the best gifts I received from my parents was to realize that my grades were not a gift to please them, but to please me.
The reason I bring this up is because I see too many parents either bribing their kids with money to improve their grades, or rewarding them for getting good grades with purchases. I disagree with this. Please don’t take what I say to the other extreme of saying, “Kids deserve something for doing well in school.” Everyone deserves something once in a while, it’s just the “bribing” that I dislike.
When my sixteen-year-old son told me he didn’t do well on a test but did well on his homework, I said, “I thought homework was supposed to make you learn what’s on your test, ” and left it up to him to figure it out.
I know many of you live around the world and different parts of the U.S., and I’m curious to hear your thoughts, whether you’re a parent, a grandparent, or without kids.