How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character

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Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Sep 4, 2012 - Education - 288 pages
18 Reviews
“Drop the flashcards—grit, character, and curiosity matter even more than cognitive skills. A persuasive wake-up call.”—People

Why do some children succeed while others fail? The story we usually tell about childhood and success is the one about intelligence: success comes to those who score highest on tests, from preschool admissions to SATs. But in How Children Succeed, Paul Tough argues that the qualities that matter more have to do with character: skills like perseverance, curiosity, optimism, and self-control.

How Children Succeed introduces us to a new generation of researchers and educators, who, for the first time, are using the tools of science to peel back the mysteries of character. Through their stories—and the stories of the children they are trying to help—Tough reveals how this new knowledge can transform young people’s lives. He uncovers the surprising ways in which parents do—and do not—prepare their children for adulthood. And he provides us with new insights into how to improve the lives of children growing up in poverty. This provocative and profoundly hopeful book will not only inspire and engage readers, it will also change our understanding of childhood itself.

“Illuminates the extremes of American childhood: for rich kids, a safety net drawn so tight it’s a harness; for poor kids, almost nothing to break their fall.”—New York Times

“I learned so much reading this book and I came away full of hope about how we can make life better for all kinds of kids.”—Slate
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - dooney - LibraryThing

I had high hopes for How Children Succeed by Paul Tough and it proved to be thought-provoking, especially in the first half of the book. Tough challenges the assumption that success is highly ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - rivkat - LibraryThing

Character matters to children’s success (and adults) and can be taught in school, but not in the sense of the moral virtues. Rather, the character that education should aim for involves performance ... Read full review

Contents

1 HOW TO FAIL AND HOW NOT TO
1
2 HOW TO BUILD CHARACTER
49
3 HOW TO THINK
105
4 HOW TO SUCCEED
148
5 A BETTER PATH
176
Back Matter
199
Back Flap
233
Back Cover
234
Spine
235
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About the author (2012)

PAUL TOUGH’s last book was How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character, which spent more than a year on the New York Times hardcover and paperback bestseller lists and was translated into twenty-seven languages. He is also the author of Whatever It Takes: Geoffrey Canada’s Quest to Change Harlem and America.He is a contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine and a regular contributor to the public-radio program This American Life. You can learn more about his work at paultough.com and follow him on Twitter @paultough.

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