Children, who are called intelligent, often cheating

Children, who are called intelligent, often cheating

Researchers from Canada, the USA and China have found that if children are praised for their intelligence, that is, the probability that children will deceive and act dishonestly.

The work was published in the journal Science Development.

Professor Kang Lee, one of the study’s authors, said that praise is one of the most popular forms of reward children, their parents and teachers. However, the abuse of endorsement of children’s behavior can have unpleasant consequences.

In the experiment, the scientists asked three-year and five-year olds to play a game where I was required to guess the answer. If the child is called the right word, praised him either for his ingenuity (using, for example, the phrase “You’re so smart”), or for a job well done (e.g., “this time you did a great job”). After the praise of the children continued to play. Some time later, the researchers left the room, having asked the children not to cheat and look the answers. Their behavior was monitored using a hidden camera.

Despite the fine line between the two forms of approval was that the children, who were called intelligent, were more likely to be dishonest than those who were praised for their efforts. The results were similar for both age groups.

In another experiment, the researchers told each child that he is smart. This information also influenced the tendency of the child to cheat. The authors believe that if parents or teachers praise the child’s ability to do anything, the child understands it as a stable trait, and feel the need to conform to someone else’s expectations constantly, and so it encourages the child to behave is not always fair.