Essay 30 – A sense of competition in children should be encouraged

GT Writing Task 2 (Essay Writing) Sample # 30

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.

Write about the following topic:

Some people think that a sense of competition in children should be encouraged. Others believe that children who are taught to co-operate rather than compete become more useful adults.

Discuss both these views and give your own opinion.

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

You should write at least 250 words.

Model Answer 1: [View: In favour of teaching children cooperation]

At the beginning of human history, when our early human ancestors used to live in the cave, the idea of carrying a “sense of competition” was perfectly alright because we had to fight with animals and many other adverse situations to survive. But, we don’t live in the “cave” age anymore, and as such, encouraging children to compete against each other is not needed, according to many. In this essay, I will discuss both views but personally, I am in favour of teaching cooperation rather than competition to children.

To begin with, by our very nature, we want to blend within a crowd, we want to identify ourselves with a certain group, be it a religious group, a musical band, a football team or a political party. In order to grow and evolve, we need to feel connected to other people, we need to learn from them, and learn from our peers, instead of actually remaining busy competing against each other. So, in a sense, it is fair to assume that we are born to be “co-operators” and we should teach our children to help others, not to fight to accumulate as much as they can.

On the other hand, we are also “competitors” by the very same nature as we have a certain tendency to stick out of the crowd, be somebody, and be acknowledged for what we are able to achieve. Of course, this kind of “competition” is alright for young children to a certain extent as it helps them become better doctors, better teachers or better lawyers in the future. But, encouraging them to be any more “competitive”, than what they already naturally are, is certainly not a good thing because this would ultimately weaken, if not destroy, their “spirit of humanity” which has helped us survive so far by cooperating among each other for thousands of years.

To draw the conclusion, cooperation is what we actually need to teach our children if we genuinely want to live in a better world, instead of encouraging our children to compete against each other.

Model Answer 2: [View: We should teach children both cooperation and competition.]

In today’s society, the debate on whether competition or cooperation is more beneficial for children is ongoing. Some individuals argue that competition is essential for children as it instils a sense of ambition and drives them to achieve their goals. However, others argue that cooperation is more important, as it encourages children to work together to achieve a common goal and become better team players. In this essay, I will discuss both views. Personally, I believe that both competition and cooperation are useful skills that we should teach our children.

On the one hand, those who advocate for competition argue that it is essential for children’s success in life. Competition pushes children to work harder, improve their skills, and strive for excellence. For instance, participating in sports competitions, academic contests, and other competitions can motivate children to set and achieve personal goals. It also prepares them for the competitive nature of the adult world, where competition for jobs and opportunities is prevalent.

On the other hand, those who support cooperation believe that it is a more valuable skill than competition. Cooperative children learn to work with others towards a shared goal, which fosters a sense of community and social responsibility. This skill can translate into the workplace, where teamwork and collaboration are essential for success. In addition, it helps children to develop social skills and learn how to communicate and resolve conflicts effectively.

In my opinion, both competition and cooperation are valuable skills that should be taught to children. While competition may push children to strive for excellence, it can also be detrimental to their mental health and create a cutthroat environment. Cooperative skills are equally important, as they encourage children to develop empathy, problem-solving, and communication skills. Ultimately, children need a balance of both competition and cooperation to become successful and well-rounded adults.

In conclusion, the debate over whether competition or cooperation is more important for children is endless. While competition can foster ambition and drive, cooperation teaches children valuable social and communication skills. In my opinion, both skills are equally important and should be taught to children in a balanced manner.

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