Since I (baby boomer) started playing netball when I was 5 years old in South Africa I always had a competitive streak in me. However that only meant I practised harder. I remember in high school I started shooting 100 goals a day and at University I challenged myself to shoot 100 goals in a row or I will have to start from scratch. I worked hard and strived to at least be good at what I’m doing, if not being a winner. After I had my lovely daughter (Gen Z) and had sent her to school I learned that teachers were talking about participation and not about winning. So when did this all change?
How do we engage Gen Z and keep their attention?
Born roughly between 1995 and 2015, Gen Z made up 24% of the workforce in 2020. This generation has already proven themselves radically different from their Millennial predecessors. Competition is pretty fierce when it comes to Gen Z. The key is to create constructive competition.
Child development experts believe competition is healthy for children as it will teach them empathy, how to collaborate with others to problem solve, and tenacity.
“Competition helps kids learn that it is not always the best or the brightest who are successful, but rather those that work hard and stick with it,” says Timothy Gunn, Psy.D., a pediatric neuropsychologist, owner of Gunn Psychological Services, Inc., in Southern California, and a judge on Lifetime Network’s Child Genius: Battle of the Brightest docu-series. What’s more, he says children who engage in competition “earn critical social skills through interacting with other children, while also learning the value of hard work and developing self-esteem and self-efficacy.”
At Kai’s Clan, we recognize that competitions can fuel engagement, participation, and recognition, therefore we run several competitions throughout the year.
A couple of weeks ago we launched the Global Chess Challenge. While you do not need to be an expert in chess or coding, we want to combine these two skills, and problem-solving and critical thinking is valued in our teachings at Kai’s Clan. Since then, we have taken on another challenge of ourselves to bring to you a new competition.
Today we are proud to announce that we are part of the International Seaperch Challenge 2021.
We have big plans to expand Kai’s Clan, especially our Mars Adventure. For more information on the 2021 International SeaPerch Challenge, visit www.seaperch.org/2021-season
We are also very excited to bring back the School Space Race for another year in Term 3. Only this time it will be bigger, we plan to bring it to the international stage and invite any schools from around the world who are interested, not just for those who are in New Zealand. So watch this space!
This weeks’ featured article’
Meet Kai at one of the following events.
Computational Thinking for All, Meet Commitment Makers
May 14, 10 am Pacific Standard Time
Interface XPO 2021 (workshops at each event delivered by teachers)
Christchurch – 21 May at Lincoln Event Centre
Wellington – 25 May at Lower Hutt Events Centre
Auckland – 27 May at Trust Arena
Interactive Breakout Session:
EDT: Friday, June 4 @ 6:15p – 7:55p
NZST: Saturday, June 5 @ 10:15a – 11:55
Informational Breakout Session with Live Q&A:
EDT: Saturday, June 5 @ 4:50p – 5:35p
NZST: Saturday, June 6 @ 8:50a – 9:35a
For more information check out www.seaperch.org/2021-season