Thomas Thurman


Blog Post created by Thomas Thurman on Jul 2, 2013

I was reading this short piece earlier:


The important part:


Regardless of whether students are rich or poor, she said, the two habits that most accurately predict achievement are their self-control and their grit: the ability to deliberately practice new skills even when it’s frustrating and confusing and kids feel like they’re failing. Scientists have found that, given a choice, all humans—all creatures—will take the path of least resistance to reach a goal.  So what if struggling students knew this? What if, as Dr. Duckworth suggested, we told students about the psychology of achievement? What if we explained to children that “most cats and rats and dogs and people all hate effort,” and that they’re behaving rationally when they resist? The flip side is that rational behavior won’t get them where they want to go.  Kids are probably thinking that the stars in their classrooms, or the higher achievers across town, are smarter or more talented than they are. In fact, the opposite may be true. When Dr. Duckworth and others studied students such as Spelling Bee champions, they found that those who had less talent, but more self-control, beat out those with greater natural abilities but less grit.

I think this condenses a number of useful ideas I'd been pondering. What do you think?