Happy Friday, Rules readers! The weather is beautiful in Washington today. Before I slip out to enjoy it, I’d like to share some good reads about school climate and student well-being. This week, we read about helping black boys succeed, grit, what happens to popular kids, and more.
‘The beauty and brilliance’
The narrative of black boys in this city has always been around their deficits and what they are not doing.The more folks that we can get to build the collective will to take up that space and see the beauty and brilliance in African-American male children, and really validate their voice by listening to them, the faster we'll be able to change the conditions and the culture." —MSNBC covers a program designed to help black boys beat the odds in Oakland schools.
Fostering grit is a dialogue. It's not something that we do to our students; rather, it is something that we do with them. An important part of fostering grit and teaching for it is being transparent to everyone—students, their parents, and the administration—about why this is necessary and what it takes to get there. No one would expect to get a good workout at the gym without sweating, and no one should expect to know how to handle adversity without experiencing it." —The head of New City School in St. Louis writes in TeachThought about helping students develop grit.
Me and my shadow
Whether we realize it or not, we are powerful figures in the eyes of our students. Our shadows loom large in their eyes, and we must always be aware of their effects." —A vice principal guest blogs in EdWeek's opinion blog, Finding Common Ground.
Sex, drugs, rock n’ roll ... and ‘pseudomaturity’
The urge to be seen as grown up long before they are really emotionally (or behaviorally) mature is nearly universal among children entering puberty, but Allen and his colleagues note normal 'does not necessarily mean healthy or adaptive.'" —Inside School Research covers a study about what happens to the cool kids after middle school.
A version of this news article first appeared in the Rules for Engagement blog.