Perseverance for Elementary Students-What is it and Why is it Important?


Perseverance for elementary students is vital to help them achieve their goals. Perseverance is defined as the steadfast pursuit of a mission, task or journey despite the distraction, discouragement, and obstacles. On the other hand, grit is argued to be a trait of perseverance allowing individuals to accomplish their goals despite obstacles over an extended period of time.

What is Perseverance?

Perseverance could also mean fighting through, past individuals’ comfort zone. This means never giving up when things or tasks become ultimately challenging that you didn’t actually believe they would. The term perseverance encompasses what’s to fight until the very end of a particular pursuit to finally achieve completion.

It’s easy to give up when things go wrong or get hard. Nevertheless, persevering through particular things or pursuits is essential in building your character. This is a form of self-test to identify how far you can really go. Your own strength will be demonstrated, and you can prove your capability.

Once you have achieved your goals through hard work and perseverance, the sense of pride and accomplishment is very empowering. Completing tasks makes you satisfied, however, if you fight through the challenges and obstacles and put your best effort, you will encounter the feeling of satisfaction and pride.

Why is Perseverance Important?

Perseverance is vital because this plays a vital role in building a character that keeps on no matter how hard things are. This acts as individuals’ inner strength that helps them ignore and overcome obstacles and keep moving forward towards their goal or their chosen path. Perseverance is essential because this is what individuals need to overcome diversity, criticism, and setbacks.
This trait has to be learned and then further developed. Individuals’ ability to persevere at any given task, journey or quest can incrementally be improved. If they have succeeded in persevering to accomplish even simple goals, they will find their ability to do it again in a higher level next time they are called on to use this trait.

Individuals’ ability to persevere at any given task, journey or quest can incrementally be improved.

Perseverance is closely aligned yet different from determination and resilience. In order to accomplish and achieve big things in life, you need to develop these three.

Perseverance for Elementary Students-Why is it Significant?

Why would elementary students want perseverance in their life? These kids might even be surprised and left clueless on why perseverance for elementary students is significant. The reason is that perseverance is one of the keys to living a life that they want, they can enjoy, and they can be proud of. Why persevere even at a young age? Simply because life is full of challenges. Elementary days will just give these kids simple struggles, but as they age, they will realize that life is never that easy.
Practicing perseverance for elementary students would prepare them for all the things that lie ahead not just academically but in all aspects of life. Perseverance can also serve as their drive to help them get past all the hard stuff of elementary years up to the coming years. Without perseverance for elementary students, these kids will never go far in life.

Perseverance is therefore important for kids to develop. Since life is full of complexities that even kids can experience, perseverance can help them get through it. For elementary students, the challenge can be hard physically like raking the leaves out of schoolyard, staying strong after an intense sports match at school, challenging the mind to learn the new math equation or staying focused on subject matters. There are instances that challenges can be emotional wherein kids get sad and depressed when bullied and more.

Taking the easy way like quitting, avoiding the situation or cheating does not make challenges go away. Practicing perseverance for elementary students is very helpful because this gives the student the driving force to stay strong and always do the right thing.

Helping Students Understand the Concepts of Perseverance
There are ways to help students understand the concept and practice perseverance in school or even at home. These might include the following:

  • Helping Children Find Purpose in Life ​

Discuss their purpose and goals in life. Talk about the necessary steps required so that the child can achieve his or her goal. You can also encourage children to create a dream board and help them visualize their purpose.

•  Conducting Grit Interviews

One way of introducing the concept is to encourage children to conduct an interview with grandparents, with their neighbors or acquaintances who have worked towards long-term goals. Through this, kids will be able to learn the concept and realize the significance of perseverance in one’s life.

grit interview with grandparent

• Share Stories of Famous Gritty People

You can also encourage your children to study about famous people that persevered in spite of the difficulties. Studying people’s success and failures can help kids realize that perseverance through failures and mistakes can lead to ultimate success.

• Take Time to Ask a Child What’s the Hardest Part

When elementary students feel discouraged or are tempted to give up, take time to ask them about the hardest part. Upon identifying challenge through communication with the child ask them what they can possibly do to overcome the challenge or the hard part.

• Try Grit Pie Exercise

This exercise can work bot on the young and old child, but the old ones can better accomplish this even without much guidance. This was created by Amy Lyon, a 5th-grade teacher in New Hampshire. This is based on a book entitled “The Optimistic Child” authored by Martin Seligman, a professor in the University of Pennsylvania and a co-founder of Positive Psychology.

Amy Lyon makes use of this grit pie exercise with her students in order to teach optimism and to also help them be aware of their own thoughts. The Grit Pie Exercise tends to represent the obstacles elementary students face and every slice represents the cause of the problem. For every slide, students assess whether their thoughts regarding these are permanent such as “I will never excel in Mathematics or temporary like “My friends talk too much and are distracting me. The Grit Pie Exercise is something that is not taught in schools.

Find out more about Grit pie

Aside from the ones mentioned above, there are other ways to introduce and practice the concept like focusing on long-term projects, devoting time to accomplish them, joining in sports, learning new technologies and more.

Margarita Marti is an elementary school teacher with 9 years of experience working at schools. She has a Med in “Creative arts in education”. She wrote and self-published a children’s book called “It’s ok to be different”. Don’t forget to check it out here!

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