Tamara Zentic - Boys Town Press Author
As the school year starts it is important to reflect on our teaching habits. Look at what is working, what can be improved or what needs to change entirely. This same reflection process can be translated and taught to students, helping them to find their ultimate level of success. Find ways to motivate and inspire each individual that enters your classroom to reach their full potential. But how can we measure what potential truly is and if they are truly successful?
If we choose to believe that academics and testing are the only things that determine how successful, motivated, or inspired a student is – or will – be then we are living in a “black and white” world. As we regroup, let’s think about introducing “color” to the “black and white” student and school setting.
One way to do this is by considering Executive Function (EF) and social skills as additional indicators of success. Developing EF and social skills can add dimension to our students and tap into their reservoir of intangible potential. These skills could include their ability to be optimistic, to have a zest for life, to explore their own curiosity, to set goals, or to take responsibility for their own actions and decisions. But one of the most important qualities to cultivate and encourage in students is the ability to persevere and to exhibit grit in their everyday lives.
Grit is the self-motivating spark that pushes people to do their best. In fact some people consider grit to be the biggest indicator of future success in all areas of life. Grit – the ability and drive to work hard, persevere through trials and failures, and overcome hardships – is a foundational block upon which many of life’s success stories are built. Many individuals start out on the path to great success and achievement, yet few have the necessary grit to stay the course as they pursue their goals and dreams.
As you start thinking about and planning for the upcoming school year, consider adding more “color” to your students by helping them to develop more grit. Here are some tips to get you started:
Life gets hard! By nature and through life events, some people possess or develop more grit than others. But that shouldn’t deter us. Anyone, at any age, through a few simple strategies, can develop more GRIT (Generating Relentless Inner Toughness)!
Get additional lesson ideas and activities on understanding and developing grit here.