The Limitations of Teaching ‘Grit’ in the Classroom
The first time I heard a preschooler explaining a classmate’s disruptive behavior, I was surprised at how adult her 4-year-old voice sounded.
Her classmate “doesn’t know how to sit still and listen,” she said to me, while I sat at the snack table with them. He couldn’t learn because he couldn’t follow directions, she explained, as if she had recently completed a behavioral assessment on him.
Months before either of these children would start kindergarten, they had formed judgments about who was smart and capable of learning and who was not. They had absorbed ideas on why some students wrote their names neatly and others broke crayons.
This precocious little girl talked about her classmate matter-of-factly and without any malice in a classroom where the teachers were well-trained and supportive of a diverse student body that was racially and economically mixed.
What the little girl didn’t know about her classmate was that his family life was chaotic, without consistent routines or caregivers. He had suffered some traumas at home, which showed in his behavior at school.
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Earlier in 2017, Allen County, with the help of the Hospital Council of Northwest Ohio, surveyed the residents to gain information regarding health-related data. From those results, priority areas were determined. These priorities are created based on community needs and developed through deliberation between multiple community agencies and members.
HELENA – A new program in East Helena Public Schools is hoping to prevent youth suicide by starting education much sooner. The program is called the Good Behavior Game by Paxis Institute and was made possible by grants from American Chemet and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana totaling $15,000.
International research has shown the Good Behavior Game to be an efficient method for reducing off-task behaviors in the classroom, as well as increasing prosocial skills, while long-term follow-ups have indicated positive effects on a wide range of health issues.
As Yamhill-Carlton Elementary School third graders worked on math problem, teacher Kourtney Fjelland watched not only how well they were handling fractions, but also how well they were behaving. Most were concentrating, cooperating, focusing on their work and staying in their seats. In other words, they were exhibiting the good behaviors students themselves suggested and agreed upon earlier in the year, also as part of the PAX Good Behavior Game.