A US father has revealed the two tricks he uses to encourage his son to read more books - and it's left the internet divided.
"We pay my oldest $1 every time he reads a book," David Woodland of San Francisco, wrote on Twitter. "We're talking 160 page chapter books. I'm out $120 this year and he thinks he's ripping me off. Best investment ever.
We pay my oldest $1 every time he reads a book. We’re talking 160 page chapter books. 😂— David Woodland (@DavidSven) July 17, 2020
I’m out $120 this year and he thinks he’s ripping me off. Best investment ever.
"The second trick is: he has a strict bedtime, but can stay up late if he is reading books," Mr Woodland added.
But not everyone agreed with the tactic, with many suggesting it would create bad habits.
You'll be out a lot more for his therapy.— Jake REI (@jkostecki_rei) July 18, 2020
I've got 4 kids (15 through 4, the older 3 doing amazing in school etc. etc.) and this is a horrible idea that teaches really bad incentives.
Hope this doesn't backfire and bite you guys in the behind.
I've been reluctant to incentivize things like reading in fear of replacing the intrinsic motivation ("I want to read") with an extrinsic one ("I get money for reading")— Taras Kaduk (@taraskaduk) July 17, 2020
I think @DanielPink wrote about it in "Drive"?
I'm curious about the effect then the incentive is removed.
I just heard an NPR podcast today that talked about the idea of paying kids to do things they should be doing anyway. It is a topic that's been studied, basically it removes the motivation to do the task. So once you stop paying them, they won't do it anymore.— Theresa Daudier (@TDaudier) July 18, 2020
Others, however, shared that a similar idea had also worked for them.
I give one of my foster kids $1 to memorize poems. Some random online told me I shouldn’t incentivize kids to learn... but in 2 years he’s gone from Shel Silverstein to Dorothy Parker and even writes a synopsis when he wants extra. I don’t regret a cent.— Maddie (@madisontewers) July 18, 2020
We pay our 7 year old to do chores that include reading to her baby sister and organizing her room and closet.. I’m all for it.— ball o’ panic (@jamaraehopkins) July 18, 2020
I respectfully disagree. I believe paying them is a good incentive to get them started. Eventually, with everything they are learning, they will develop the love for reading and searching new ideas.— Fonzi • Content Is Profit (@luiscamejov) July 17, 2020
Before we had internet at home, I was paid for translating songs from English to Spanish.— Israel Muñoz (@israelmuca) July 17, 2020
Helped a ton with my vocabulary and ability to understand spoken English!
In an updated tweet, Mr Woodland admitted that he didn't realise "encouraging reading" would be such a controversial topic.
"He's a great kid and thrives in academics and sports," he said. " More importantly, he's a loving older brother/friend/son. I am proud to be his dad. Don't worry about my kid! He will be okay!"
Didn’t realize “encouraging reading” could be such a controversial topic, so I’ll end on this:— David Woodland (@DavidSven) July 18, 2020
He’s a great kid and thrives in academics and sports. More importantly, he is a loving older brother/friend/son.
I am proud to be his dad. Don’t worry about my kid! He will be okay!