"What comes around goes around, goes away and then comes back. In a chapter on overpraise, the authors describe laboratory studies in which children, having taken an initial test and then been praised for their intelligence, fared worse in follow-up rounds, while children who were instead commended for their effort challenged themselves further and performed better over all. Frequent and oft-undeserved rewards in the form of praise, the authors caution, deprive a child of motivation and discourage persistence. “It’s a neurobiological fact,” they write, pointing to studies of M.R.I. scans and trained rodents. True, but far from new. Albeit without the sci-techy benefit of brain imaging, in 1964, “Children: The Challenge,” a popular manual of the day, warned, “Praise, as a means of encouragement, must be used very cautiously.” It can be “dangerous” if a child sees praise as a reward and “could easily lead to discouragement,” the author, Rudolf Dreikurs, noted."
By: Arusyak Sargsyan