Thursday, May 29, 2008

Their Sincere Efforts

In today's educational systems, too much emphasis is placed on academic excellence. The students who retain the material and excel in their exams receive praise and attention, while the others slip through the cracks and feel unaccomplished. This is not the proper approach when it comes to Torah. Children must understand that their sincere efforts to understand are inherently valuable regardless of the results. The rewards for Torah learning are given for the hard work, not for the bottom-line achievement. Parents and educators must therefore make a point of emphasizing the importance of the work and effort, rather than focusing their attention only on the final result. Even if a student does not correctly answer all the questions on the exam, he must still be made to feel proud and accomplished for the effort he exerted in studying the material.

(Rabbi Eli Mansour)