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We’re teaching kids to follow their dreams. Maybe teach them to be helpful instead

Every child’s speech ended the same way. Whether the kid was supposed to be Renaissance painter Raphael, escaped-slave-turned-Civil War-spy Harriet Tubman, ocean explorer Jacques Cousteau or child activist Malala Yousafzai, each famous person ended their speech by listing their “good qualities.” These were, universally, “determination,” “pursuing my dreams” and “never giving up on reaching my goals.” I began to suspect that parts of these speeches had been written by the teachers.

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