Praise effort rather than “smartness”.

At a recent BBQ, I met a 9 year-old boy who enjoyed programming Minecraft mods in Java but who purportedly got frustrated whenever trying to do math problems above his grade level.  It seemed that this classic article might be applicable:

The article draws heavily from Carol Dweck’s work on “Growth Mindset”.  To hear from her first hand, check out this TED talk:

Of course, it goes beyond praise.  Any kind of reward system for the kids should take this into account (money, one-on-one time, etc.).

If you have any success stories or counterexamples, feel free to comment!

First blog post

As someone who doesn’t believe in “reinventing the wheel”, I’m excited to be a parent in the “Age of the Internet” where resources abound: videos, books, blogs, online newspapers, etc. I’ll be sharing thoughts about the resources I found useful and/or interesting.

Every kid is different. Every parent is different. Not everything will work for everybody. Feel free to add comments on whether a given idea seems to work for you or you took a different approach.