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Incorporating Grit & Resilience in Progressive Learning

Incorporating Grit & Resilience in Progressive Learning

“Passion and perseverance for long term and meaningful goals,” says psychologist Angela Duckworth when asked to describe grit, a term she coined.

Since the publishing of her book, Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance, and the circulation of her TED Talk, grit has often been identified as the key ingredient to success in any aspect of life because it is the ability to persevere in the face of challenges. It is having the attitude to stay committed to a goal and work hard to achieve that goal despite setbacks and difficulties, despite tasks being boring, despite failing.

Resilience, of course, is part and parcel of having grit, being that it is the ability to recover from difficulties. Note that this is different from grit in the sense that it is being able to recover, while grit as a whole also includes trying again and staying committed to the goal so that success is achieved.

Duckworth’s research has shown that, whether it be winning a national spelling bee, or graduating from exclusive colleges with honors, or holding high ranking positions in multi-billion dollar companies, these two character traits are the most important factors to success.  She encourages parents to raise their children to be gritty. 

At Keys, we fully agree that talent and intelligence are only part of the success recipe. This is why we find ways to incorporate the character traits of grit and resilience in various aspects of our curriculum and school life. We do this by:

  • Encouraging risk taking and removing focus from mistakes 

Teachers at Keys are taught how to create a comfortable environment for their students, so that students are not afraid to make mistakes. By seeing mistakes as part of the process, students are willing to take more risks and work towards a correct final solution.

  • Encouraging collaboration and teamwork

Working with others is a big part of being gritty because working with others is one of life’s challenges. Children need to learn to work together and succeed together–to be gritty together so they can also be gritty alone.

  • Giving opportunities for reflection and feedback

Teachers work with students to talk about their strengths and have open discussions on their areas that need improvement, highlighting the latter as points on which they can reflect so that children become more self-aware of the skills they need to enhance.

  • Fostering a growth mindset

Children at Keys are taught to see challenges as opportunities to develop their skills. They are taught that these challenges and how they are overcome can be the basis of future strategies in their lives.

  • Set challenging, but attainable goals

Encouraging grit also means teaching children to identify what can be done within certain timeframes. By breaking big goals into smaller steps and, when necessary, making those small steps goals or milestones in themselves, children are more likely to keep going and keep working towards the original goal.

  • Emphasize the importance of self-care

Part of resilience is being able to take care of oneself physically and mentally. Children at Keys are encouraged to take breaks and do activities that promote relaxation. This is also seen as part of the success process because giving yourself a break can sometimes lead you to the solution!

Success takes effort, and it is those that are adaptive and gritty that often achieve what most want. At Keys School Manila, if we can successfully teach your children these two character traits, we believe that they will be the most successful version of themselves!

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