This year, we are working with students to track and use their assessment data to help them to set goals and create action plans for continued growth towards meeting their goals.
As a school community, we are now ready to talk about levels of HIGH EFFORT and PERSISTENCE, ideas that are captured in the word, GRIT.
During one of our Professional Development workshops last month, Steve Barkley, a master teacher consultant who has been working with us at Pride for the past 3 years, shared some important ideas that will help to propel our push for higher levels of student achievement and the development of our students as independent critical thinkers.
Mr. Barkley shared the work of an author, Martin Seligman, who writes in his book, “Flourish” , about the importance of self-discipline in academic success. He states that the “ultimate self-discipline character is GRIT… the never-yielding form of self- discipline, an extreme persistence that produces very high effort….
The more GRIT you have, the more time you spend on the task, and all those hours don’t just add to whatever innate skill you have: they multiply your progress to the goal.”(Seligman, 2011).
Mr. Barkley challenged us as teachers and leaders to think about what we need to do to increase student self–discipline and build GRIT:
- What kind of self–discipline will create the student achievement that we seek?
- What changes do we need to make in the rigor of our teaching to move students from “just doing what is necessary to pass or complete the assignment, or get an “A” to students setting goals and practicing identifying and committing to “what it takes to achieve it”. (Barkley 2012)
We are excited about this next step in our thinking and action as a school community and we would like to invite parents and community members to join us as we begin our focus. We need you more than ever as partners in our continual evolution as a high performing school. We need your help to identify family and community actions that will support our mutual work in ensuring that our students continue to build their skills as powerful thinkers and problem solvers.
Please reach out to Mrs. Thomas, Ms Dumenigo or Ms Cenac if you are interested in sharing your ideas and time to work on our GRIT Initiative.