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Teaching Kids to Thrive
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Teaching Kids to Thrive
Essential Skills for Success

  • Debbie Silver - Education Consultant, Keynote Speaker, and Author, www.debbiesilver.com
  • Dedra Stafford - Education Consultant, Keynote Speaker, and Author, www.dedrastafford.com


June 2017 | 288 pages | Corwin

There’s more to student success than standards and test scores…

The modern view of student achievement focuses on high test scores, higher standards, and racing to the top. Thrive skills fit with new ESSA requirements to go beyond basic academic measurements in order to equip students for lifelong success.

Debbie Silver and Dedra Stafford present a practical handbook that guides teachers and parents in fostering learners who are socially and emotionally healthy and prepared to undertake future challenges.  Through practical examples, precise strategies, and specific tools this book demonstrates how to empower learners in areas that include:

  • Using mindfulness strategies to help students tap their inner strengths
  • Learning to self-regulate and control other executive brain functions
  • Developing growth mindsets along with perseverance and resilience
  • Cultivating a sense of responsibility, honesty, and integrity
  • Encouraging a capacity for empathy and gratitude

Grounded in decades of psychological research, Teaching Kids to Thrive merges academic, social, and self-skills to stimulate personal and school achievement.


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Foreword
 
About the Authors
 
Acknowledgments
 
INTRODUCTION
Why Teach Social and Emotional Learning (SEL) in the Classroom?

 
What Are the Thrive Skills?

 
Taking This Book to the Next Level (Thrive Website)

 
Thriving Together

 
 
CHAPTER 1. MINDFULNESS IN THE CLASSROOM: SLOWING DOWN TO SPEED UP SUCCESS
Why Don’t They Just Pay Attention?

 
Mindfulness: What It Is and What It Is Not

 
Using Mindfulness in the Classroom

 
Beginning a Mindfulness Practice

 
Research on Mindfulness in the Classroom

 
Implementation in the Classroom

 
What Supporting Mindfulness Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
CHAPTER 2. HELPING STUDENTS WITH THEIR COMMAND AND CONTROL FUNCTIONS
Executive Function: What Is It?

 
The Six Skills of Executive Functioning

 
EF Skill 1: Self-Regulation and Self-Control

 
EF Skill 2: Working Memory

 
EF Skill 3: Task Initiation, Organization, and Time Management

 
EF Skill 4: Flexibility

 
EF Skill 5: Emotional Regulation

 
EF Skill 6: Focus

 
What Supporting Executive Function Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
CHAPTER 3. CREATING STUDENT AGENCY THROUGH SELF-EFFICACY AND GROWTH MINDSET
Self-Efficacy: What Is It?

 
Self-Efficacy: What Is It Not? (Learned Helplessness)

 
Aim for the Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD)

 
Students’ Beliefs About Success (Attribution Theory)

 
Growth vs. Fixed Mindsets

 
How Do We Help Students Develop Growth Mindsets?

 
What Supporting Self-Efficacy and Growth Mindset Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
CHAPTER 4. PERSEVERANCE: PUSHING THROUGH DESPITE THE SETBACKS
Quit Now or Finish? What Makes the Difference?

 
Perseverance: What It Is and What It Is Not

 
What Educators Need to Know About Perseverance

 
What Does Perseverance Look Like in the Classroom?

 
What Supporting Perseverance Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
CHAPTER 5. BOUNCING BACK: TEACHING KIDS ABOUT RESILIENCE
Resilience: What Is It?

 
Acknowledge the Struggle

 
Normalize the Struggle

 
The Classroom as the Tribe

 
Resiliency in Boys

 
Developing Resiliency Through Competency

 
Building Hope

 
What Supporting Resilience Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
CHAPTER 6. BUILDING A CULTURE OF RESPONSIBILITY IN THE CLASSROOM
Give Kids a Chance to Act Responsibly

 
Teaching Responsibility in an Entitled Society

 
Using Accountability to Promote Responsibility

 
Building a Culture of Responsibility

 
Teachers as Models of Responsibility

 
How Do We Reinforce Responsibility?

 
What Supporting Responsibility Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
CHAPTER 7. CULTIVATING HONESTY AND INTEGRITY IN STUDENT CHOICES
How Do We Teach Personal Integrity?

 
How Do We Teach Academic Integrity?

 
What Do We Do When Children Cheat?

 
The Restorative Justice Approach

 
The Courage to Take a Stand

 
What Supporting Honesty and Integrity Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
CHAPTER 8. TAPPING INTO EMPATHY
Empathy: What Is It?

 
Does Everyone Have Empathy?

 
What Does Empathy Look Like in Action?

 
Why Is It Important to Teach About Empathy?

 
Modeling Empathy in the Classroom

 
Service Learning Projects

 
Integrating Empathy Into the Curriculum

 
The Power of Empathy

 
What Supporting Empathy Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
CHAPTER 9. IT’S ALL ABOUT GRATITUDE
“Pay It Forward” Is Still Thriving

 
Gratitude: What Is It?

 
What Research Tells Us About Gratitude

 
Why We Should Teach Gratitude in the Classroom

 
How Do We Teach Gratitude in the Classroom?

 
What Supporting Gratitude Looks Like in the Classroom

 
Frequently Asked Questions

 
Discussion Questions and Exercises

 
Thrive Skills in Action

 
 
Final Words
 
References
 
Index

"Silver and Stafford have answered the question educators have asked time and again: “How, exactly, do I create a classroom culture conducive to growth, collaboration and critical thinking?” The book explores the importance of resilience, empathy, persistence and skills related to active listening to creating the mindset that will nurture and accelerate the continuous-improvement process. These are not “soft skills” that live on the periphery of textbook-driven, correct-answer-seeking lessons. They are life skills students need to practice - and teachers need to model - on the road to success in school, college, the workplace, and in a democracy. This is an eminently practical resource with enough research, examples, frequently asked questions, exercises, stories and humor for all educators; and all educators should have a copy of this book."

Ron Nash, Author/Consultant
Ron Nash and Associates, Inc., Virginia Beach, VA

"I am doing backflips over having this book in my life! I work with teachers every day and every day I field questions on how to support learners in being open and present for learning.  It is true-- we are educating a different type of learner than those of earlier generations.  And so our teaching must shift, remembering that we teach children, not curriculum.  Silver and Stafford have written the guide to working with this new generation of students; one which begins with the social-emotional health of each learner.  They tackle head-on the most challenging and real moments of teaching, creating a research-based, practical, tried-and-true (yet cutting edge) handbook to simply and powerfully show learners how to ground and bloom.  While this book focuses on students, the outcomes will bring joy, fulfillment, and gratitude to teachers.  I have been waiting for this book without knowing it and now it will be my go-to resource and recommended text on teaching students how to thrive in all educational settings and in life."

Patty McGee, Author/Consultant
Feedback That Moves Writers Forward, Harrington Park, NJ

"There are no convenient, instant answers to solve tough issues in education, and no one “event” can make a difficult student easy to teach. Great teaching is hard work. This book lays out a brilliant process for building Thrive skills.  Read the book.  Practice the skills. Practice patience and perseverance.  Enjoy the rewards."

Dr. Monte Selby
Educational Consultant/Author/Songwriter, Boulder, CO

"Plain spoken and practical with enough neuroscientific research to support what teachers and parents have been sensing but didn't have the knowledge to articulate."

Dr. Susan Grant,Ph.D, LLC
Neurolinguist, Timonium, MD

"It is now time for student to truly thrive!  Educators have been looking for a resource that puts the reality back in education. Silver and Stafford have done just that. The authors know about the importance of students understanding content, but they also realize that students must be optimistic, show integrity, understand empathy, and believe in gratitude. What we can learn from this book is that you may never lose a job in life because you’re too smart; you get fired because you’re not a nice person. Make sure you look at their examples and situations and try to change your practices within our classroom or school. Let’s help our students thrive in all aspects of their life!"

Jack Berckemeyer, Educator, Author, Humorist and Consultant
Berckemeyer Consulting Group, Denver, CO
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ISBN: 9781506326931
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