Grit is resilience and perseverance in the face of adversity–something we could all could use more of, right? Every day, in the news and in classrooms and in life, we see examples of people who just don’t have enough of it. As parents and teachers, we can help our kids tremendously by teaching them attitudes and coping skills to deal with setbacks and disappointments.
Around the nation, schools are beginning to see grit as key to students’ success — and just as important to teach as reading and math. – NPR
So how do we teach grit?
One way to make kids more tenacious . . . is to show them how grit has been important to the success of others, and how mistakes and failures are normal parts of learning — not reasons to quit. – NPR
As literature teachers, we think great protagonists make great mentors for kids. So we introduce our students to them, and nurture the relationship.
Here are some gritty characters who’ve taught us for life:
You can’t go wrong introducing your kids to Adam, Jo, Heidi, Jimmy, Janey, and Axel. Each of these fine young people faces big problems, gets back up on his or her feet, pushes onward, and succeeds–not always in the way they first hoped for, but always in the best way.
If you’re looking for summer reading that will help your kids learn grit, you can read more about these stories by clicking the links below. And if you’d like help introducing your kids to these characters in real-life, hands-on ways, our LitWits Kits can help you do that.
- Adam of the Road by Elizabeth Janet Gray (1942)
- Little Women by Louisa May Alcott (1868)
- Heidi by Johanna Spyri (1880)
- Follow My Leader by James B. Garfield (1957)
- Blue Willow by Doris Gates (1940)
- Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne (1864)
Let us know how a literary grit mentor influenced YOUR life!