Harry Wong
Dec 2017
Vol 14 No 4

A Change of Environment
By Sarah Powley

Paul Tough, a journalist-turned-education-sage wrote a book a few years ago called How Children Succeed. In that book, he confirmed everything I've known for years—from experience and by instinct—about why some kids are successful and why some aren't. It isn't about IQ; it isn't always about money and family resources.

It's about having the discipline to make yourself study when you'd rather be playing video games or texting or driving around town with your friends on a fine spring night. It's about persistence—about seeing a teacher after school to get something explained, about giving up a lunch period to visit the math lab, or revising that paper when the assignment to do so is optional. It's about memorizing the formulas and going over the study notes. It's about setting a goal and moving toward it, step by step by step.

But Tough has good news: These "character" traits, as he calls them, can be taught.

In his most recent book, Helping Students Succeed, Tough goes further, writing: "If we want to improve a child's grit or resilience or self-control, it turns out that the place to begin is not with the child himself. What we need to change first is his environment." Tough's new book addresses the academic failure that 51% of America's public school students experience because of poverty and its attendant problems.

sarah-1Recently, I spent a day with the teachers and students in a program initiated a few years ago at McCutcheon High School in Lafayette, Indiana, to meet the needs of incoming at-risk students. The "Maverick Launch"—so named because the school's mascot is an unbranded steer—is a school-within-a-school, an innovation in education that has brought success to targeted students in many districts across the country.

Poverty may be the root cause of the problems some Maverick Launch students experience, but not all of them. They are not students who were identified because of poor discipline records, yet some are familiar enough with the principal's office. What they do have in common is that all of them—approximately 100 lucky students—were identified in middle school, for one reason or another, as being at risk of not graduating from high school....

From the Teachers.Net Community

Four Easy Teaching Strategies for Summarizing Skills

By Susan Fitzell

Summarizing is a life-long skill that greatly affects student learning. It is also a skill that students struggle with significantly. One of the worst consequences of a lack of summarizing …

The BEST Dr. Seuss Read Across America Activities!

By Teachers.Net Resources

Everything you’ll need to make the birthday of Dr. Seuss and Read Across America Day extra special this year! A whole page of ideas, crafts, tips, events tested and shared …

Classrooms of the Future – Imagine this!

By Teachers.Net News Desk

It is fun to imagine the future, especially when we hear about the latest advances in technology and learn about a possible future where trips to Mars become commonplace or …

Why the International Baccalaureate Curriculum Craze & How to Join?

By Teachers.Net News Desk

The international education market is still buzzing about the International Baccalaureate curriculum because of the proliferation of schools using the IB curricula and because of the prestige that comes along …

The Problems of a Tall, Redheaded Male Relief Teacher

By Teachers.Net News Desk

In many ways, when you are in the circumstances of being a relief teacher, being a 6ft.4 male is a huge advantage in terms of classroom management. However, I’m finding …

Apple Seeds of Inspiration – December and January

By Barb Stutesman

During December, Bar shared these seeds of inspiration for your enjoyment. Also great material for morning announcements and newsletters!

Mathematics and Music

By Internet Scout Report

The American Mathematics Society (AMS) has created this diverse resource list dedicated to the intersecting fields of mathematics and music.

Teachers.Net Gazette Vol.14 No.1 Jan 2017
Cover Story by Sarah Powley
A Change of Environment
More Teacher Articles...
»Classroom Management Articles by Harry and Rosemary WongHarry K. & Rosemary Wong
»The Trump Effect on EducationNews Desk
»Four Easy Teaching Strategies for Summarizing SkillsSusan Fitzell
»Teaching Strategies: Fact vs. OpinionSusan Fitzell
»The BEST Dr. Seuss Read Across America Activities!News Desk
»Classrooms of the Future - Imagine this!News Desk
»The Importance of Keeping the Teacher's Learning Brain AliveJeny Rapheal
»Why the International Baccalaureate Curriculum Craze & How to Join?News Desk
»Date Rape Talk Lands Teacher in Hot WaterNews Desk
»The Problems of a Tall, Redheaded Male Relief TeacherNews Desk
»Google MoonInternet Scout Report
»Mathematics and MusicInternet Scout Report
»Efficient Printing Tips To Save Teachers MoneyNews Desk
»7 Easy-to-Implement Non-Linguistic Vocabulary InterventionsSusan Fitzell
»Classroom Labels - When They're Damaging Rather Than HelpfulNews Desk
»Roald Dahl: Teach the Stories - Language Arts ResourceNews Desk
»Deliberating in a Democracy - Social Studies Lesson PlansInternet Scout Report
»High School Marine Science SymposiumNews Desk
»The Civil War in ArtInternet Scout Report
»Apple Seeds of Inspiration - December and JanuaryBarb Stutesman
»Apple Seeds Quotes for Educators - NovemberNews Desk

By State
AL   AK   AZ   AR   CA   CO   CT   DE   DC   FL   GA   HI   ID   IL   IN   IA   KS   KY   LA    ME   MD   MA   MI   MN   MS   MO   MT   NE   NV   NH   NJ   NM   NY   NC   ND   OH   OK   OR   PA   RI   SC   SD   TN   TX   UT   VT     VA   WA   WV   WI   WY