Camp Teaches “Grit”

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Daniel Sarver, Extension Specialist

A recent article from Audrey Monke in the Parent’s Blog of the American Camp Association talks about the kinds of “away from home” experiences we want our youth to experience. These experiences are where youth can grow important character traits like independence, self-confidence, and, interestingly, “GRIT.” Below is an excerpt from that article which discusses grit. Read the full article.

“This is the new buzzword in education and parenting circles thanks to Paul Tough’s best-selling book, How Children Succeed. Angela Duckworth further cemented the importance of grit, or resilience, in her popular TED talk: Grit, the Power of Passion and Perseverance, and her book, Grit. People with grit have “stick-to-itiveness,” persistence, and resilience, all of which help them work hard and push past difficulties and failures.

We all need some grit. But how do we teach grit to a distinctively non-gritty kid or young adult—one who quits when something gets challenging, who doesn’t want to try anything new or difficult, or who prefers playing end- less video games to practicing piano, reading, or some other more useful-seeming skill?

As parents, it’s hard to create experiences that require our children to use grit, but at camp those experiences happen every day…”