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Teaching the Gift of Failure

Veteran teacher, author, and education journalist Jessica Lahey visited University School of Milwaukee on Tuesday, Feb. 6 to speak one-on-one with teachers and parents on how to build independence, competence, and motivation amongst children. She was here as part of the speaker series sponsored by USM and REDgen.

More than 175 people were in attendance for the evening session as Lahey, author of “The Gift of Failure,” discussed the research on motivation, resilience, and learning, and explained how parenting and teaching that encourages kids’ autonomy boosts motivation and improves educational outcomes.

Lahey also held a special afternoon session for area teachers, where she explored the research on extrinsic and intrinsic motivators, praise, and learned helplessness, while offering instruction and assessment methods that promote deep learning and engagement. She also covered topics such as autonomy-supportive teaching, productive talks with parents, working with problematic parents, and changing school culture to build independence, competence, and connection. More than 60 teachers from area school districts, as well as University School, attended.

Both events were free and open to the public, and were supported in part by funding from University School’s Parents’ Association.
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