Silent Transition to P.1 (Marshmallows)

Every morning we transition to Period 1 in silence. The reason for this is to practise and improve our self-control. The theory that you can practise and improve your self-control is from the work of Walter Mischel, often known as the Marshmallow Test.

Walter Mischel is an American psychologist who wanted to test self-control. He designed an experiment called the Marshmallow Test. In this test, Mischel gave a young child (three or four years old) a marshmallow. He said that they could eat it now, or if they waited until he came back, they could have two. Mischel then left the room and observed the child through a two way mirror. He repeated this experiment on several children and recorded how long the different children could wait to receive the second marshmallow.

Mischel tracked the students through their lives to see if there was any difference between the students who showed self-control and managed to wait for a second marshmallow and the students who seemed to lack self-control and eat the first marshmallow. Mischel found that students who waited longer to eat the marshmallow were more successful as adults in terms of income, education level, and had more friends. What’s most interesting for us at DCA is that Mischel found that you can practise and improve your self-control. This is the reason why we practise our self-control and transition in silence to Period 1 every day at DCA.


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