Trophies for everyone!

Filed under: Big Kids, Activities: Babies

Some experts believe that awarding children trophies just for participating in sports can actually damage their self-esteem rather than improve it. They talk about increased narcissism and the idea that kids are growing up thinking they are special. There may or may not be something to that theory, but I can tell you that the trophy Ellie received this weekend just for showing up and playing made her very happy and proud.

When we went to dinner after this season's final soccer game, Ellie insisted on displaying her new trophy on the restaurant table. When the waiter was kind enough to ask about it, she proudly told him about the goal she scored in that game (her first and only of the season). The waiter went on to tell her how he, too, was a soccer player as a kid. The two of them had a short discussion about positions and plays and when he walked away, Ellie was beaming.

Maybe she didn't really deserve a trophy. She wasn't the star player and certainly didn't score the most goals. But that trophy, and the kind waiter's attention, made her feel like a real athlete and gave her just enough of a push to get off the fence about playing again this fall. She is excited about next season and is already planning where the trophy will go. What's wrong with that?

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AdviceMama Says:
Start by teaching him that it is safe to do so.