Many teens struggle with finding their passion in life, experiencing boredom and a lack of motivation. Often education is a mindless series of checking off the boxes as we progress through a series of classes where we fail to find meaning and direction. My purpose in teaching this class is to help kids explore what it is they enjoy, what encourages them to persevere in learning, how failures can be turned into successes and how they can begin the work of setting and realizing their goals.
“A combination of passion and perseverance”, this is how Angela Duckworth, Professor of Psychology at the University of Pennsylvania defines the concept of GRIT.
GRIT is about learning how to persevere in the face of failure. Getting back up when we fall; starting over when we fail. It is a way of redefining success not simply by your talent or your intelligence, but by changing the way you think about failure and perseverance.
Although not a skill that all of us are born with, GRIT can be learned. Would you like to learn what it takes to become gritty, find your passion, and develop perseverance? In this seven week class we will explore what GRIT really is through insights and interviews with dozens of high achievers, and by examining some of the fascinating experiments on peak performance. Then, we will take a look at our own opportunities to develop GRIT. We will learn how to foster this character quality by developing life-long interests, finding passion, purpose, and commitment in both ourselves and through helping others; and by teaching GRIT to ourselves.
The class will meet in a live session on Thursday’s between 2:00 and 3:15 each week. This lecture will be recorded and available for downloading on Friday morning. Each Monday you will receive an email from me inviting you to the module of course material and videos to view. Assignments for this class are minimal and are aimed at facilitating practice of the concepts we are covering. Since this class is directed at self-exploration and improvement, grades will not be given, however feedback will be given for the assignments.
Week 1: The Concept and Importance of GRIT
Week 2: Intelligence and Talent vs. GRIT
Week 3: Exploring Our Own Interests
Week 4: What so Important About Practice, and Other Factors Related to GRIT
Week 5: Passion, Purpose, and Commitment
Week 6: Hope: How to Teach Yourself and Your Kids to be Gritty
Week 7: Living Out GRIT: Doing the Hard Things
Who should enroll?
Students from 8th – 12th grade. Parents, this class is open to you as well. Special sessions will be given to not only improve your own GRIT, but also to also show you how to encourage and help your children develop passion and perseverance in their lives. Additionally, one free parent registration is offered with each student registration.
- High speed, broadband Internet
- Sound card and microphone (for live sessions)
- Streaming video capabilities to watch recorded lectures
Evaluation and Feedback
Communication with students will occur via email and through the Canvas website. Questions and feedback are always welcome and I will respond to all communication within 24 hours.
Parents and students may register for the class through the website. Parents are copied on all emails to students, and you can expect to hear from me immediately after registration and on a weekly basis.