Reading Unit.  Reading for Insight: The Candy Test: Controlling Impulses

Excerpt from the article

1 A little, 4-year-old boy is alone in a room sitting at a table staring at a piece of candy.  He has to make a decision.  If he can wait until his teacher returns in a few minutes, she will give him two pieces of candy.  But if he can’t wait and decides to eat the piece that is in front of him, he won’t get a second piece when she returns.  Amazingly, what he decides to do (eat the one piece now or wait and get a second one in a few minutes) can help us predict the type of grades he will get in high school, whether or not he will graduate from college, what his health will be like when he is an adult, and whether or not he’ll get a divorce in the future.

(This posting includes handouts which you are welcome to use with your students.)

See Reading Units: Reading for Insights (Introduction)  for an introduction to these reading units.

Study Guide, Reflection & Vocabulary  for The Candy Test: Controlling Impulses (and excerpts)

ArticleThe Candy Test Article

Study Guide, Reflection & Vocabulary: : The Candy Test Study Guide

Answer KeyThe Candy Test Answer Key

Excerpts

7 Let’s say that the child was “Alice,” and she chose cookies as her reward.  The researcher told Alice that she had a choice.  She could eat the one cookie immediately, or if she waited, she could have the two cookies.  Then the researcher told Alice that he would leave the room.  If she decided to eat the one cookie, she should ring the bell, and he would return and she would only get the single cookie.  But if she could avoid ringing the bell wait until the researcher returned, she could eat the two cookies.

The Ability to Delay

15 Mischel, the author of The Marshmallow Test, and his research colleagues wanted to know how these pre-schoolers were able to make themselves wait when they really wanted to eat the one piece of the reward; in other words, he wanted to understand how they were able to control their impulses.  If they could find this out, it could help people figure out how to stop engaging in bad activities like smoking, over-eating or even playing video games instead of studying.

See Categories: Reading Units for links to all the Reading Units.

Onward!

David Kehe

 

 

 

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