Is The Praise Always Deserving?

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Participation Trophy

Is The Praise Always Deserving ?

There has been a lot of conversation lately about giving children trophies or medals for participating in sports. There seems to be strong points on both sides of this conversation. I have heard parents and coaches feel that it allows the children to feel good about what they have done.

On the other side of this conversation, parents and coaches ask the question of whether by awarding them in this way , we are sending the message that there is no need or reason to reach  higher, or set new goals.

Are we setting them up for disappointments down the road, as they get older and have to start competing for a place on the team? Or consider that they will one day have to interview for a job and they will not receive the job just because they tried hard.

My children have always participated in sports and other extracurricular activities, and praise was given when warranted. I’ve always given them praise for giving their maximum effort. However, I’ve never and never will lead them to believe they deserve a reward for giving their best. Giving your best is the bare minimum in which we all should give. The reward is for winner.
What are your thoughts on this conversation ?