Teachers should not award prizes to star pupils in assembly, an education expert has claimed. Marvin Berkowitz said it caused ‘collateral damage’ because other children can resent the recipients who themselves can feel embarrassed. Teachers should instead praise pupils individually.
Speaking at a conference in Glasgow, Professor Berkowitz said: ‘My elegant advice to you about rewards and recognition is the following: stop it. Replace it with individual affirmation. ‘All I have to do is go up to my pupil, put my hand on her shoulder and say, “I saw what you did. That was so kind. Keep it up. ‘No audience, no one else, walk away – and there’s no collateral damage that we get from the other stuff.’
He said the effects of being singled out for praise could stay with children for years afterwards: ‘Some of those marks are temporary and wash away, some are scars that will throb with…
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