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Dec. 7th, 2012

Over on FB, I've been watching a utube video of "The Marshmallow Test". It's a test that was done on young kids, which at first glance seems to be testing kid's patience, or ability to delay gratification. The child is seated at a table and a plate with a LARGE marshmallow is placed in front of him/her. The adult tells the child "You can eat this marshmallow now, but if you can wait 10 minutes, I'll bring a second marshmallow, and you can have two." The test is ACTUALLY about how children respond to the reliability of their environment! Before the marshmallow part, the adult gives a 'used' box of crayons to the child with paper and makes a similar proposal:"You can use these crayons now, or if you can wait ten minutes, I'll go and get some other better crayons." If the adult returns and apologizes and says she couldn't find the other crayons, the child is more likely to eat the single marshmallow, as they perceive the environment as "unreliable (a bird in the hand,etc.) If the adult actually brings the better crayons, the child is far more likely to delay eating the single marshmallow, as they see the adult as reliable. So DON'T promise what you may not be able to deliver!!

There's also a utube video of a "Mature Marshmallow test" done with adults, and I LOLLED!!! (they sniffed and covered it up and turned their backs and had a HARD time waiting!!


( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Dec. 7th, 2012 06:52 pm (UTC)
That's fascinating! I know of the original Piaget test about delayed gratification (it was Piaget, wasn't it?), but this adds such an interesting extra layer! Do you have a link?
Dec. 7th, 2012 06:54 pm (UTC)
Sorry, I'm pretty clueless on the computer!! You could probably get it by googling utube and asking for "the Marshmallow test".
Dec. 7th, 2012 09:31 pm (UTC)

This is the adults version. There were quite a lot of videos of kids so I haven't found it.
Dec. 7th, 2012 07:25 pm (UTC)
Can you post the links?
Dec. 7th, 2012 07:48 pm (UTC)
Sorry, I'm pretty clueless on the computer!! You could probably get it by googling utube and asking for "the Marshmallow test".
Dec. 7th, 2012 08:24 pm (UTC)
I <3 the marshmallow test. Our preacher did a sermon on it one time. She gave everyone bubble wrap and told us not to pop it because there was something better...at teh end of the sermon if you still hadn't popped your bubble wrap she rolled a giant roll down the center aisle and you could go stomp and dance on it. It was awesome...except that I had popped mine. *CRY*
Dec. 7th, 2012 09:37 pm (UTC)
This made me laugh.
Dec. 7th, 2012 09:54 pm (UTC)
The long term studies on the original Marshmallow Test indicate that kids who were able to delay gratification were way more successful than kids who weren't. Going back to that study with the new tests that indicate it is about trust in adults, stability of home life, etc, it is really clear the effects of unstable parenting on young children!
Dec. 8th, 2012 02:32 pm (UTC)
my kids hate marshmallows.
Dec. 8th, 2012 05:32 pm (UTC)
I have given my kid the marshmallow test! Twice. The first time, around 2 years old, he stuffed the marshmallow into is mouth and that was the end of it. The second time, at almost 4 years old, he hung on and made it through. But not before holding the marshmallow and flying it around the room as a spaceship for almost the entire time. Not sure if either time counts, but it was fun to try.
Dec. 8th, 2012 09:14 pm (UTC)
That's really interesting. What age group was this? I really don't think my 3 year old would pass!
Dec. 12th, 2012 11:59 pm (UTC)
My son refused to eat M&Ms for over 1 1/2 years, because they were a reward for when he pooped in the potty, and it took him that long to get fully trained.
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )


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