How to Teach Students to Build Stamina for SuccessBy Deborah Granger
Building Stamina for Success
Excellence is not a singular act, but a habit. You are what you repeatedly do. ~Aristotle
“My students do not focus. They talk too much in class. If only they would pay attention, they would learn!” This is a common cry from teachers in schools today. Student engagement is one of the most important goals of an effective teacher. So what to do? How can a teacher help students to have the stamina to complete assignments, the endurance to keep working when they do not feel like it, and the focus they need for understanding.
In addition, there are many wonderful published fiction or nonfiction stories that can be shared about heroes from today or long ago who were able to reach their goals by not giving up. These are timeless tales that can be read to children of any age. Who can forget the Little Engine That Could? Also:
A. Wilma Unlimited by Kathleen Krull. The story of Wilma Rudolph whose endurance helped her succeed.
B. The Man Who Walked Between the Towers by Mordicai Gerstein. Philippe Petit, through sheer determination walked a tight rope between the World Trade Center Towers.
C. Courage by Bernard Waber. A collection of stories about courage and steadfastness.
D. Sybil Ludington’s Midnight Ride by Marsha Armstel. 16 year old rode like Paul Revere to warn the troops about the British.
E. Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White. Charlotte never gives up trying to save her friend.
F. The Princess Knight by Cornelia Funke. Determination makes up for her lack of size as Violetta words to become a knight.
G. Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco. Sometimes encouragement from others is what we need to never give up.
H. The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind by William Kamkwamba. William would never let go of his dream.
Teach the students the word stamina. The dictionary describes it as the ability to sustain prolonged physical or mental effort. Brainstorm a list of synonyms for the word and post as [continued on page 2]