Why I Refuse To Let My Kid Have A Participation Award

Nowadays it seems competitive sports have changed and the winning players or team no longer gets the award, but both teams get an award.  The losing team gets a “participation” award.  The concept behind this is to boost the self-esteem of all children involved and remove the focus on “winners” and “losers”.

My son played on a soccer team last season.  Their team did great even though most of them were first-timers.  They made it to the Playoffs, and their opponent was a very experienced team who had been playing together for a few seasons already.  As the game went on, emotions ran high on both sides.  The players on the field gave it their all.  They left their hearts on the field.  The game went into double overtime and finally ended with a win for the opposing team.  They won by 1 point!  The players on my son’s team, including my son, either cried or fought back tears.  This was so important to me to see because what it showed me was that they all gave everything they had to attain a victory that was important to them.  For that time they played as one unit on the field.  They were brothers (and sisters) for that time on the field.

When it came time for the teams who had made the playoffs to get their trophies and awards, my son’s team was awarded the 2nd place medals.  Only the first place team got the trophy.  At the time my heart ached for my son who was still processing the loss.  In his mind, if he played his hardest, he would win AND get a trophy just like the other team.  The fact of the matter is the other team was more experienced, and in the end, earned the victory.

I only saw the top 2 teams in the playoffs earn any award for playing.  I heard some parents grumble that their children should have received awards for playing on the teams during the season.  Here’s why their children didn’t need to receive awards:

1-I understand you feel it builds confidence in your child, but it also builds a sense of entitlement to things your child has not earned.

2-Now your child has a tangible goal to say ok, if I study harder, practice more, build up stamina, etc. Then I can attain that goal too.

3-The victory once they do attain that goal will be appreciated more than if they were just handed an award to pacify them.

4-The world will NOT give your child anything they have not earned.  While you don’t have to teach them that the world is hard, you do have to teach them to be realistic in a world where even if they deserve it, sometimes they won’t receive it.

5-This deprives your child of getting the full satisfaction of earning something they have truly worked hard and given their all for.

6-This teaches your child that anything is attainable if they put the work in.

7-This teaches your child to hand down the lesson to their children that they won’t have to work hard to earn anything.

As for my children, I don’t want them to receive any participation award they have not earned.  They won’t understand the true value of what it takes to grind and to reap the benefits of that grinding.  Our kids have to know that as minorities, the deck is already stacked against them. Handouts come at a cost and I want my kids to be able to stand on their own two feet and proudly say they earned what they have received.

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The “No Homework” Trend Schools Are Adopting

Do you remember coming home after school only to have to start on your homework which usually lasted well into the evening. Once you were done, you only had time for dinner, a bath, and then bed time? That’s just how school went right?

With mixed research coming in, and an increasing amount of information showing that homework doesn’t have the intended success rates once thought to have had among students, some schools have decided to do something completely different and opt out of homework altogether.  Several letters have been sent home from various schools informing parents of the decision. Some have even instructed that family time be spent together instead of homework.

The majority of parents have been pleased with this arrangement.  Not only do they not have to fight with their child to get homework done in a timely manner, but they also get to enjoy time usually spent on homework with the child. Have you ever had to do math homework with your kid? It’s brutal!

With this being so new, the results are not in yet as to how negatively or positively this will affect families. I can’t fathom how it can affect them negatively unless that family time is used as solo screen time instead. This is only if they are getting the adequate education during class hours though. One must ask, however, in a classroom with over 30 children and only 1 teacher in most cases, will this work for against the children’s education.

Is your kid’s school still assigning homework? Have they switched over to a no homework model? I’d love to hear from a parent whose child is in a no homework school. What are the pros and cons?

 

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Sincerely, A Worried Mother

Dear SexyMomsRock:

As I’m sure you’ve already heard, but President Obama has recently signed an initiative to allow transgender students to use whichever bathroom they identify with.  While I have no problem with them being transgender, my concern is my middle school daughter.  It concerns me to think that my daughter will be showering after gym class with a boy who while he may identify as a female, still has a penis.  And then I’m concerned about the rambunctious young boys who may use this as an excuse to attack transgender students, or come into the showers where my daughter is, even though it is not the gender they identify with.  I feel like my concerns are valid, and my main concern is protecting my daughter.  As a mom, what do we do in this position?

Sincerely,

A Worried Mother

 

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This Sign Was Put Up At A School, Parents Having Mixed Reactions

12734142_10156649341015160_8327685920812100825_nThis was placed in the carpool lane at a school by the Headmaster of that school.  Parents have had mixed reactions about the stance this headmaster took.  What do you think? Do you bail your kids out? Do you think this is a good way to teach them responsibility?  Sound off!

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High School Senior Pulled Out Of Class For Not Wearing Bra

A senior in high school is up in arms after being asked to wear a bra to school.  Apparently, the imprints of her nipples were protruding through her clothes, and she was pulled out of class and asked to wear “something more appropriate”. Below is the post she shared on Facebook defending her position.  As we know, even the slightest of suggestions from boys who are classmates can wind up with them being arrested for sexual harassment nowadays. While our culture is definitely oversexualized, there has to be some kind of boundary set as well.  For a young woman to very overtly wear no bra, allowing her nipples to protrude, that could definitely be a distraction for other students and possibly even teachers.  I can understand the girl wanting to have the right to wear whatever she may want to, and bras don’t necessarily have to be a requirement to wear, but does this surpass boundaries?  If a male student decided to wear pants with no underwear, allowing his penis print to be seen by all, would we still have the same reaction?  Would we be just as offended?

Here is the post she shared on Facebook.  If this were your daughter, would you support and defend? Or would you agree that it’s too much? We’d love to hear!

“Today at SLHS, something took place in which I was very offended. I was sitting at my computer during class when a security guard walks into my classroom. She walks around the room and then slowly makes her way over to me. She then says to me, ” Can you come outside”. And of course, I do as she says and I go out into the hall to speak with her. She then says to me, ” Honey, you need to wear a shirt.” Clearly, as you can see in the picture, I was wearing a shirt. I look at her and say “Okay.” with a puzzled face. She then proceeds to tell me ” That’s inappropriate *gestures her hands over her own breasts* You’re going to have to put on another shirt.” Since I was at school, I, of course, did not just happen to have another shirt in my backpack, so that is what I tell her. She tells me that I can go to the office and put on one of their shirts. I then remember that I had a jacket in my car, so I asked her if that would be okay for me to wear. She then said something similar to, “Yes, that’s fine. Just know from now on, that’s not appropriate for school.”
In the SLHS “Dress Standards” section of the Handbook, it does not say anywhere that students must wear a bra. The superintendent of the school has now addressed that this was a mistake and I should not have been taken out of class for this. Girls do not have to wear bras to school. I am a senior in high school and should have the right to choose whether or not I please to wear a bra. #FreeTheNipple #FreeTheNip #SLHS #SLisAfraidOfBreasts”

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They Want to Walk to School ALONE

I know that is your little man or your baby girl but they are ready to spread their wings and walk to school…ALONE. Maybe they are not completely alone, perhaps they walk with their siblings or other neighborhood children, but, in no way, do they see themselves as the a kid who needs mommy to see them safely all the way to their school door. So what do you do to prepare for their first step of independence?

First, breathe and collect yourself. All moms understand the anxiety you feel when you have to let go. It is not easy and, as they get older, it will not be the last time you experience it. This is not just an opportunity for them to grow and display courage and independence, but it is an opportunity for you too. Your trust in their choices and abilities  has a chance to grow while you find a little more independence to do the tasks needed to pull you closer to your goals.

Second, make a plan. You should take the time and develop a plan with your child on how things should work. They should have clear times when they should be at certain places. Make sure they understand that you should be able to find them at that corner, or at that friend’s house, or at school or home at the time you designate. They must know that anything outside of fulfilling that expectation is unacceptable. In addition to their route and expected time plan, you should also have a known emergency plan. Anything from an unexpected early school closure to construction on their regular route home can force the best laid plans to change. Try to prepare them with a plan for every possible scenario, with appropriate emergency contacts, and don’t be afraid to put it in writing.

Third, practice. Waiting until the week before school begins is too late. Your child(ren) should be able to identify the sights, landmarks, and familiar people of the neighborhood. They should know the street signs and their meanings. They should know the names and faces of the people that belong to that community not just for your assurance of additional eyes looking out for them, but also for their protection from those that may not have their best interest in mind. Practice will be the key to their familiarity. Take walks with them through the neighborhood for seemingly no reason at all. Then, take deliberate walks mimicking their route to and from school. Perhaps the weekend before, give them a chance to go it alone.

With proper planning and practice it is possible for your child to begin successfully walking to school. However, only you can determine if they are emotionally mature to handle the task. Will they follow your instructions? Can they make good decisions quickly or at critical moments? Even more so, only you know if YOU are emotionally capable of handling their growth. Are you the type of mom who will follow them to make sure they are where you expect? Would you send spies to check on them? If your day will be consumed with worry about their ability to walk to school, then just drive them until you are ready. That is your child and no one can tell you when the time is right. Just know, even though we want to keep them five forever, they will grow up. Opportunities like this as a child help build the adult they will become.

 

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