Too often, high school these days is focused on information learning and retention. It’s a format that produces a sense of disengagement from school and learning. It’s also a format that isn’t preparing our youth to face the challenges of the rapidly evolving world they’re about to inherit.
Before someone can learn, work effectively, grow in their career, and build a successful life, they need to develop healthy habits of mind; habits that enable them to focus, persist, and succeed.
It’s my nature to build things that address big issues and fixing what’s broken in education is a BIG issue. So at Opportunity Education, we’ve continued developing our Quest Forward Learning Program to enable students to practice six Essential Habits on a daily basis. Based on extensive research in social-emotional learning, we identified these habits as foundational character traits needed for success:
- Be Curious
- Manage Yourself
- Communicate and Collaborate
- Persist through Setbacks
- Solve Problems
- Live an Integrated Life
While other schools may talk about this type of deep learning, our schools do it every day with activities embedded in the academic work, with the design of internships, and with teachers supporting growth in each of these habits.
The result? We see more curious students pushing their own growth. We see students communicating and collaborating to solve school and community problems. We see students learn to manage frustrating setbacks with grit and resilience. (That last one is something my life has taught me is invaluable.)
I am proud of the work Opportunity Education is doing through its Quest Forward Learning Program, helping our high school students to succeed in their education and supporting them in building a life-long foundation of learning, growth, and success.