Do you reward and punish your children for their grades? Before doing so, analyze what those numbers really represent?
If you are a mother, your children’s grades are probably one of the issues that worries you the most. At the end of each school stage, comes the dreaded evaluation and, with it, the grades; a few simple numbers that seem to determine if a child is valid, intelligent, adequate and if he will be successful in the future.
However, this rating system is not only outdated, it can sometimes be harmful and even cruel to minors.
In our societies, for hundreds of years now, we used to evaluate students using a numerical system. When the grades obtained are not what they expected, parents experience enormous concern, children feel inadequate, and the family system faces great friction and conflict.
However, children’s grades will not determine their future success. So it is time that we start to understand what these numbers really mean.
What are the ratings based on?
We believe that the grades inform us of the intelligence of our children, the capacities they have, and the intellectual level in which they are. We think that they communicate to us the effort that the child has made, the attention they have given and the willingness they have had to learn.
From these numerical data, we deduce if a minor is valid, adequate, and successful. We are proud or ashamed, angry, rewarding, and punishing based on this rating. But can we really get all that information from a single number? The answer to this question is clearly negative.
The child is awarded a grade based on their performance on one or more written tests. Such tests not only tend to overlook all kinds of practical learning but also primarily value memorization.
In other words, a child capable of retaining precise data in his memory and “vomiting” it on the exam will obtain high marks, despite not understanding what he is writing and forgetting it the next day.
The exams do not assess the actual understanding of the subject or the meaningful learning that has taken place in it. They also do not take into account the child’s effort, interest, or attitude. They only value a specific and specific result, ignoring the process.
Furthermore, they completely ignore the individual differences between minors. They all have to conform to the mold being judged and, if they don’t, they are literally labeled insufficient.
Your children’s grades will not determine their success:
For all the above, it is important to be clear that your children’s grades will not determine their success. In the first place, because they are not a reliable measure of intelligence, capacity, or attitude.
A minor can be very capable, curious, skilled, and competent and not see this reflected in his grades. A child may have a willingness to learn and great perseverance and still get low grades
But, in addition, the qualifications are not determinative because what they measure is not really relevant for success in adult life. In the real world, the ability to memorize is of little use, while other skills, such as social skills, creativity, or self-confidence are what is really valued.
Fitting into the mold during the school years can even be a handicap when dealing with adult reality. On the other hand, it has been proven that less successful students in the school have certain advantages when it comes to being famous entrepreneurs. And, while the school rewards those who adapt, life rewards those who take risks.
Focus on the Process:
Therefore, when it comes to your child’s education, try to focus on the process and not the results. Make sure to instill a curiosity to learn, critical thinking, perseverance, and responsibility.
Of course, encourage him to work hard and overcome school challenges, but keep in mind that grades are only a number, something that does not define your child as a person and will not determine his or her success.