Secrets of Success: GRIT (Summer 2)

From: $85.00 / month for 3 months

Grades: 8th–12th

Live class: Thursdays 2:00–3:00 p.m. EST

Course dates: July 8th-August 23rd

Price: $199

Instructor: Bonnie Gonzalez, M. ED.

Instructor email:


Course Description

See Reviews of Instructor Bonnie Gonzalez

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.

Course Structure

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.

Technology Requirements:

  • 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.

Required Texts

Optional purchase of the book GRIT by Angela Duckworth.


  1. Parent in GRIT

    Thank you for a most excellent and invaluable class. Truly. There are a couple of things I wish every person could be exposed to and learn in school – this is one of them. Everything was organized and presented very well; and, obviously, your ability to communicate the material is exceptional…I thought the whole class was excellent. Anyway, this is just to say how much I, both as a parent and personally, appreciated the class and all you did to make it happen. Thank you. -B.G.

  2. Parent in GRIT

    When my oldest son shared that Bonnie Gonzalez’s course on GRIT had inspired him to get organized, I picked up the book myself. Next our family began listening to it as an audiobook. Then Bonnie offered a second course which taught about Growth Mindset. This time both my boys signed up and my middle school and elementary-aged girls enjoyed listening from time to time and reading the handouts too. Since then, the word “yet” has become an addendum to the end of sentences when someone is feeling doubtful of achieving a goal.

    Bonnie presents new material in a logical order with an enthusiastic style that encourages students of varying ages to participate. Additional links reinforce what she teaches and further assist students as they cement their understanding of new concepts. Try a course with your student(s)- you will be glad you did as you all learn concrete steps to shift your thinking to adopt a more positive lifestyle — and one where goals can become achievable with confidence.

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Instructor Bio

Bonnie Gonzalez

The field of psychology is not only my career; it is also my passion. You might even call me a “psychology nerd.” Much of my free time is spent reading about new and interesting developments in the field. I have taught AP Psychology for the past 10 years to home school students. I have also taught Introductory Psychology and Developmental Psychology at local community colleges, and I have developed online seminars for healthcare providers on the topics of stress, communication, job burn-out, anger assessment and management, and boundary setting. I have 36 years of experience as a counselor in the field of individual, marriage, and family counseling where I have had the opportunity to instruct individuals in developing new and more productive behaviors. My degrees include an M.ED. in counseling psychology and a B.A in psychology, both received from Temple University in Philadelphia, PA.


All classes taught by Bonnie Gonzalez