"Punished by Rewards" by Alfie Kohn

[Ray Allis - 950102:1945]

From another context: a crosslink.

Forwarded message:


From futurework@csf.colorado.edu Mon Jan 2 09:20:45 1995
Date: Mon, 2 Jan 1995 10:17:57 -0700
Tor Forde said, part:

>But Norwegian pupils are not high achievers/performers in
>subjects like mathematics, physics, chemistry etc.
>Norwegian pupils just keeps an average European ability in the
>different skills. In lots of countries the pupils achieve better
>in mathematics etc. And the reason to this is that it is not a
>goal for Norwegian schools to develop high achievers. The goal
>is to develop humans. The Norwegian schools are not willing to
>put pressure upon the pupils, and the pupils are supposed to to
>some extent take part in the development of their education.
>Equality and participation are very important Norwegian values,
>much more important than competition and achievement.
>The Norwegian schools will not produce losers, and to avoid that
>it tries to develop every pupil as a winner, and of course that
>means that it tries not to encourage extremely high achievements
>among the most skilled pupils. But Norwegian society is a high
>achiever/performer: a few days ago the Swedish business magazine
>"Veckans Affdrer" proclaimed that Norway is the country with the
>most healthy economy in the World.
>Norwegian schools tries to build upon the pupils curiosity, and
>not to force the pupils to learn.

This point is so important to our discussion. What is the goal of
education: turning out employees/consumers or people with competence and
caring and an understanding of the world and life?

I just finished reading a very good book on this very topic, "Punished by
Rewards", by Alfie Kohn (he has also written books on competition and
altrusism/empathy). His analysis of behaviourism is very good at pointing
to the way the latter destroys intrinsic motivation.

In the future, everyone needs that, although the dreamers of the global
economy don't thinks so.

                       Chris Bradshaw, aa122@freenet.carleton.ca Ottawa
                       Talk Globally; Walk Locally (& flock regionally)
                       Chair, NCF Public Access Committee|||||||editor,
                       Community Relations, RMOC Planning||OttawalkNews