Sunday, June 17, 2012

Teaching persistence

In honour of Father's Day, this comes from a study done recently at Brigham Young University, "Persistence is learned from fathers, study shows":

The key is for dads to practice what’s called “authoritative” parenting – not to be confused with authoritarian. Here are the three basic ingredients:
- Children feel warmth and love from their father
- Accountability and the reasons behind rules are emphasized
- Children are granted an appropriate level of autonomy

About 52 percent of the dads in the study exhibited above-average levels of authoritative parenting. Over time, their kids were significantly more likely to develop persistence, which led to better outcomes in school and lower levels of delinquency.

I'm curious about the study's methods; the article doesn't provide enough specifics. But I would love to be able to teach persistence; if this is a way to do it, I'm on board.


  1. Maybe I'm missing something, but doesn't it make sense, in any study, for approximately 50% to be above average and 50% below average?

  2. Not necessarily. If we were to use a bell shaped curve, the average is shown at the median (the apex of the bell), represented by the greatest cluster of data (individual units, etc.) with those who are either above or below average populating progressively sparser areas of the curve in either direction. But those outliers can be more weighted to either side, dependent on the population sample being scored.

    The Atlantic had an interesting article about the merits of authoritative parenting versus attached or authoritarian parenting.

  3. Russell-
    Shmuel took care of the "average" point, but to me this isn't the focus in any case. Regardless of the percentage who display "above-average" parenting, the question is how their kids turn out, no?