Should I show my child their grades?

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Should I show my child their grades?

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Parents often ask, should I show my kids their grades or keep it a secret? The assumption there is that a grade labels someone's ability and can devastate them, but I think a grade is a piece of information that children need to know the truth. Why are you afraid to show it to them? Are you afraid they will get discouraged? Only in a fixed mindset will they think, "That grade labels me. I'll never be anything." What you have to do is teach children that the grade is information of where they are at this time. If they are not happy with that, they need to work at it or be tutored or spend more time on it. It's up to them if they want to go farther than that. By lying to them or withholding information, you are not giving them the opportunity to end up where they are going. If you are always telling them how great they are and how well they are doing, and ten years later they find out they are behind everyone else. You haven't given them the chance to work hard and catch up.

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Carol Dweck, PhD

Psychologist & Author

Carol S. Dweck, PhD, is a leading researcher in the field of motivation and is the Lewis and Virginia Eaton Professor of Psychology at Stanford. Her research focuses on why students succeed and how to foster their success. More specifically, her work has demonstrated the role of mindsets in success and has shown how praise for intelligence can undermine students’ motivation and learning.

She has also held professorships at and Columbia and Harvard Universities, has lectured to education, business, and sports groups all over the world, and has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and to the National Academy of Sciences. She recently won the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award from the American Psychological Association, the highest award in Psychology. 

Her work has been prominently featured in such publications as The New Yorker, Newsweek, Time, The New York Times, and The London Times, with recent feature stories on her work in the San Francisco Chronicle and the Washington Post, and she has appeared on such shows as Today, Good Morning America, NPR’s Morning Edition, and 20/20. Her bestselling book Mindset (published by Random House) has been widely acclaimed and has been translated into 20 languages.

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