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  WINNING AND LOSING
Suzy Smith
6/9/2006
     
A cartoon in the New Yorker a few weeks ago showed a small boy entering his house dragging a huge trophy announcing to his Dad. ďWE LOST!Ē

It seems everyone is a winner in grade school. Itís a flat playing field.

Iím not sure what this is all about or what the future results are going to be. Ideally perhaps our children are being taught, ďItís not about winning, itís about how you play the game. Or ďDo your best.Ē Or maybe just show up, try and youíll be rewarded.

A coach of one of my grandsonís baseball teams told me itís important to feel like a winner, it enhances performance. Iím thinking, of course, self esteem, we all need that. We all need some trophies for our shelves. But if we all have them, do they have any meaning? Does rewarding everyone discourage a drive to excel?

Someone is always better than you are - prettier, richer, smarter, more athletic. Surely these kids see Johnny hits the ball harder than they do or Matt throws with greater accuracy. In the parlance of the 50ís, you win some, lose some. At times you win some lose most. Thatís life. We canít protect our children from it.

On the other hand (isnít there always another hand) weíre talking about childhood here, a special, magic time that should be full of trophies.
 

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