Recently, my kids went to an event where they both received a participation trophy. And they were both ecstatic. I have to admit, so was I. Why? We’d been trying for weeks – months – to get our kids to go to this activity, to actively participate, and to have a good (or at least a quiet) attitude. And after our endless encouragement and coaxing, it (finally) seemed to be working.
I’ve heard others criticize participation trophies with phrases like, “We reward mediocrity these days!” or “If these kids get a trophy just for participating, then how will they learn anything?” and I have finally figured out where I stand.
I love participation trophies. Love them.
If I had the choice, I’d hand out participation trophies like Oprah hands out prizes: “You get a participation trophy! And you get a trophy! And you get a trophy!”
Because you know what I’d love to have as an adult? More people who were excited to participate and more people who realize the value of active participation.