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True GRIT helps kids succeed


I often ask this question at my parenting seminars and the responses are fascinating.  Parents naturally want both. Sorry, but that’s not an option.   When pushed most parents choose talent over persistence, which in many ways reflects the current thinking around achievement.  Intelligence, sporting prowess and ability in whatever it is we value will only get a child or young person so far. Talent is purely potential. They need more than this to achieve sustained excellence in anything they do. It is the character traits of hard work combined with their ability to stick at a task and see it through that makes all the difference. 
   Malcolm Gladwell in his book Outliers, described twenty-something American student Renee, who took 22 minutes to work out a complicated math question. 
The average student gives up after THREE minutes, preferring to as...(sign-up as a member to continue reading this article)


That's interesting - I immediately chose persistence. Perhaps because I have a 12-year-old blessed with natural talents. An all-rounder - smart and good at sport - things have come pretty easily to him. As a result, he has little resilience or persistence when things don't go his way, so ends up not making the most of his talents, anyway. By contrast, I have a 7-year-old with serious learning difficulties who works tirelessly at gaining skills that her brother gained with no effort at all, and yet she revels in her small successes and remains endlessly joyous and determined. It means that, ironically, I am much more concerned about how my talented 12-year-old is going to get along in life than my persistent 7-year-old.
May 16, 2014
Great article!
May 16, 2014

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