Categories: Lime Connect Q & A: Your Questions. Our Answers.
My 5 year old started kindergarten this month. Like most parents, I am particularly sensitive to what is happening in the classroom, at this young age, when their little brains are like sponges and their little spirits need nurturing. Wanting to help him make this transition successfully, I pulled out my books on human development and explored the web for research on effective elementary education.
I came across a new book, "How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity and the Hidden Power of Character" by Paul Tough, whose research shows that, in the end, those with an ability to overcome obstacles with resilience, to face the world with a sense of positivity, and to self-correct along the way have a greater chance of long term success than those with strong cognitive skills alone.
This made me wonder how my son's teacher was planning on developing character in the classroom. It also made me think about all of you and your stories. Stories of perseverance despite a disability. Stories of having had to master skills like time-management and decision making as someone with ADHD. Stories of accomplishing an incredible goal in the face of challenging odds. It seems to me that a disability can be a laboratory for building these capacities for success.
As interviewing season begins for many of you and work picks up for others, I encourage you to reflect on, and perhaps share, these "softer" yet powerful capacities that you have developed as a result of being a person with a disability. I will think about what it will take to nurture them in my children.
You can read more about Paul Tough's research here.
Food for thought.