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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

Foreword by Rick Wormeli



April 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

"Teaching Kids to Thrive: Essential Skills for Success is a book that not only argues effectively for including social and emotional learning in every classroom, it also shows teachers how to do it.  Debbie Silver and Dedra Stafford demonstrate how SEL instruction can be woven into all subject areas at every level of preK-12 education. They descriptively outline what SEL-friendly classrooms look like, and they provide a wealth of tools and strategies for educators who want to teach beyond the standards. I recommend this book for new and veteran teachers alike who want to help students learn to thrive both now and throughout their future lives."

Todd Whitaker, Professor of Educational Leadership
Indiana State University, Terre Haute, IN

"Reading Teaching Kids to Thrive was like feeding my brain with PopRocks! It had me captivated, wondering, and marveling…all at the same time. Debbie and Dedra provide insightful research, actionable skills, and inspirational stories, while recognizing the voices of students and teachers at the turn of every page."

Dr. Russell J. Quaglia, Executive Director
Quaglia Institute for School Voice & Aspirations, Portland, ME

"There are some books that you pick up and just cannot put down. Well, this is one of them. If you are ready to move beyond grit, then Teaching Kids to Thrive is the linchpin needed in every school system. The authors provide relevant research to build their case and share easy and simple teacher-approved strategies that can be used immediately. Any stakeholder in education who wants to transform school culture must make Teaching Kids to Thrive required reading."

Simon T. Bailey and Marceta Reilly, Authors
Releasing Leadership Brilliance

"Debbie Silver and Debra Stafford go to the heart of schooling students in this century - addressing the power of mindfulness, the value of empathy, and boosting the resilience of young people at a time the world requires such a skill the most. Using relatable stories and strategies the goal to help students THRIVE is central in every chapter. Like a favorite piece of music, the authors' passion for education is extremely contagious and memorable."

Jennifer Buchanan, MBA, MTA
President/Speaker/Author, Calgary, Alberta

"Hoorah! Here is help with the overlooked aspects of teaching that matter most. Don't just read it, study it, live with it, and you too will thrive."

John Lounsbury, Dean Emeritus
Georgia College, Milledgeville, GA
Key features
Aside from Debbie Silver's great reputation and speaking prowess, the following are the key sales points:

Teaching Kids to Thrive Offers

•      SEL skills overview: Gives a summary of the essential social and emotional learning skills needed to help students thrive both now and in the future.

•      The latest research:  Incorporates the newest findings from neurobiology and explores their implications for classrooms.

•      Stories: Abounds with anecdotes demonstrating how Thrive skills improve the academic, social, and emotional lives of students

•      Implementation support: Delivers strategies, tips, and tools to help teachers implement SEL training at any grade level.

•      Thrive Skills in Action: Provides easy, inexpensive, teacher-tested activities for integrating Thrive skills in the classroom.

•      Additional Resources: The Taking It to the Next Level section on the Thrive website presents several resources for further activity ideas, websites, and supplemental tools.

•      FAQ: Poses thorough and insightful answers to frequently asked questions.

•      Discussion questions: Inspires deeper thinking for learning groups and individual reflection.


Sample Materials & Chapters

Chapter 1

Chapter 3


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ISBN: 9781506326931

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