They say patience is a virtue. This week, parents across the internet are putting their children’s patience to the test with the viral ‘toddler challenge’ that’s sweeping social media.
Also known as the ‘Fruit Snack Challenge’ or ‘Marshmallow Challenge,’ the idea is to test your child’s willpower by putting a tempting treat in front of them, and telling them they have to wait to eat the snack. If they can wait until the parent returns, then they’ll get two treats. But if they don’t wait to eat their treat, the one is all they get.
After explaining the rules, parents often leave the room, leaving only the camera to catch this painfully entertaining decision making process.
This test has long been conducted by psychologists studying self-control and behavior in children. Walter Mischel, a professor at Stanford University, first conducted what’s now famously known as the Stanford Marshmallow Experiment in 1970.
Researchers studied delayed gratification by offering a child the immediate reward, or two rewards if they waited. In follow-up studies, they hey measured SAT scores, educational attainment, BMI, and other life measures, and researchers found that the children who were able to wait longer for their preferred rewards to have better life outcomes.
As the trending challenge continues spread on social media, several parents have shared their children’s successes and failures. And the videos of these little cuties resisting the urge to devour those treats is PURE entertainment!
Lolo’s #ToddlerChallenge 😀😂👏 pic.twitter.com/UTI70qmejH
— Dan Johnston (@dan0johnston) May 12, 2020
#TemptationChallenge Yep my toddler completely failed this… I’ve watched so many where they showed self control. Oh no not mine 😂🙈 #toddlerchallenge #Toddlertemptation pic.twitter.com/zSBB6Dlo1B
— Mum_ofcubs (@MumOfcubs) May 13, 2020
The anticipation is agonizing!
My sister did the snack challenge with my nieces and I can’t get over how cute they are 😭😭😭😭😭 #snackchallenge #toddlerchallenge pic.twitter.com/WovGhfyPz0
— andrea (@_andreaIbrahim) May 13, 2020