Goodbye, playtime. Reading and math training have replaced finger painting in preschools. Success is the primary subject for kids these days. A four billion dollar a year tutoring industry feeds the expectation that American kids become straight-A students, concert pianists, Olympic soccer players, and fluent in Mandarin - all by the age of 18. And, if they aren’t, they won’t get into college, find a decent job, they’ll end up living at home - it all spirals down from there.
At least, that’s the way a lot of parents see it. The competitive frenzy leaves kids scheduled to the max with activities, parents hovering over homework, and kids pressured to be all-around super stars. But we all know we can’t win at everything, all the time. So, how do we teach our children in this culture of winners that it is OK to lose? How do we protect their fragile egos when they do lose? And, is it possible that maybe losing isn’t so bad after all?
These are some questions writer Sarah Baker was pondering. She’s a mother of two and will help us fill out the picture. We're also joined by Richard Ginsburg, psychologist and co-author of the book Whose Game Is It Anyway?
(Photo by tree & j hensdill)