Initiative

Growth Mindset

A Growth Mindset Fuels Creativity in Youth

“A growth mindset is when students believe that their abilities can be developed,” says Carol Dweck, renowned Stanford University psychologist. Dweck coined the phrase growth mindset after decades of research on how children and teens become successful. Dweck’s groundbreaking book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, explains that success and […]

Creativity
positive parenting

Positive Parenting: Powerful Ways to Raise Healthy Kids

Everyone wants to be a positive parent. But what does that mean? The term positive parenting is becoming more widespread as the practice of parenting becomes influenced by research in the new scientific field of positive psychology. Simply put, positive parenting behaviors are those that nurture the development of children’s […]

Compass-Inspired
Middle School Girl

Middle School: When Coming-of-Age Stories Begin

Middle school is often linked to that awkward stage of development when young people start to question their confidence and abilities. This occurs as they gain awareness of the world around them and as they compare themselves to friends and classmates. Middle school is also a time of accelerated learning […]

Self-Awareness
Role Models for Youth

How Role Models Influence Youth Strategies for Success

As teenagers grow to young adulthood, who are their role models? Who do they emulate? Why? The most popular article at Roots of Action this past year has been What is a Role Model? Five Qualities that Matter to Teens. Collected from my research on highly successfully, civically-engaged young people, […]

Resourcefulness

Teaching Children Perseverance and the Value of Work

America Rice, age 11, recently expressed her views about hard work and perseverance: “If you want something,” she said, “you have to earn it. Everything is not going to come to you just when you want it.” How do children grow up to think and feel like America Rice? How […]

Resilience

All Children Have Special Needs

Do you parent, teach, or mentor a child with special needs? Of course you do! As you know, the term special needs is most often associated with disabilities. It usually refers to a child who needs special assistance or accommodations for medical, psychological, or learning deficits. But have we allowed […]

Self-Awareness

Entitlement: Feelings that Follow Students to College

You’ve likely heard the term entitlement, defined by the American Psychiatric Association as “unreasonable expectations of especially favorable treatment or automatic compliance with expectations.” In today’s college environment, a new term has emerged called academic entitlement. It refers to a student’s expectation that they receive high grades, regardless of performance. While it’s […]

Resilience

Teachers Change Lives through Service-Learning

Jake Bernstein, age 17, is a great example of how service-learning changes lives. In fact, in one of President Obama’s annual “Back-to-School” addresses, he praised three extraordinary high school students for giving back to their communities. One was Jake Bernstein. Jake volunteers with Autism Speaks and co-launched StLouisVolunteen.com with his […]

Empathy

College Orientation for Parents: Foster Resilience!

Were you one of the thousands of parents who recently left your college freshman in an unfamiliar place?  For college freshmen and their families, September is usually a time of excitement and trepidation – an honored American rite of passage. But what has changed for you and your child? And […]

Resilience

Playing the Game: The Truth About Youth Sports

Whether or not your children play sports, you probably have an opinion about the value of sports in children’s lives. You may believe that sports help children develop teamwork skills, self-confidence, resiliency, moral character, and other personal strengths. Or you may see a dark side of youth sports, believing that […]

Resilience
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