Ran across this article on paying kids to get better grades. Focus: Is compensating your child with money a good idea? To me it's a no brainer, as much as it would be nice for young kids to like learning for the sake of learning, most just aren't programmed that way. It's kind of funny if you think about it, but we basically expect kids to put their nose to the grind stone and work their asses off for their entire childhood with the vague notion that someday years down the road it will pay off. Most adults I know couldn't be convinced to work hard that way. I find it best to reward people, both children and adults, with very tangible short term incentives for what you want them to accomplish. As human beings that seems to be what we respond to best. Money is the most effective way to accomplish this. Maybe my career makes me biased since I get raises and bonuses every time I pass a test, but there is no question that I study harder now than I ever did in school. Alt-Focus: Growing up, how were you rewarded for good grades? Unfortunately my parents do not share my point of view, and despite an obvious aptitude in most subjects my grades were painstakingly average. Pretty much every progress report I had growing up had the message that I was passing but it was obvious I wasn't trying. The only thing I was ever 'given' was the vague notion that my parents would be proud of me or some crap. In sixth grade though, McDonald's did some promotion where if you bring in your report card at the end of the semester and have good grades, it was specific like $1 off for each A etc. Bam, straight A's. My parents were so proud and thought it was because of their parenting techniques despite my even telling them that I did it for the money. They didn't get the hint and still held steadfast in giving money for academic performance sent the wrong message. I went back to high C's and low B's.