Laura Sandefer

One of my children hates to struggle with learning. He likes things to come easily to him. Learning is a joy for him until he hits a concept or a problem that requires great effort and quantities of trial and error.  His confidence stagnates and I suddenly hear the pencil slam and the “I hate math” or “this is so boring” mantra begin.

I have learned over the years that these words really mean, “I’m so frustrated because I don’t understand” or “I wish I could do this! Can someone help me?”

The article below sent to me by Caleb’s mom, Jennifer, reminds me to pull from the best of western and eastern cultures. I want to celebrate my children’s struggles with learning as often as I celebrate their creative and indepedent innovation.

http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/11/12/164793058/struggle-for-smarts-how-eastern-and-western-cultures-tackle-learning?sc=tw

At Acton we incorporate discussions of “panic zones” and “challenge zones” almost every day so that students become familiar with the idea of struggling and self-managing in order to achieve their SMART goals.

We look forward to your portfolio review time so that you feel fully armed with the best information about your child’s achievements and struggles – both to be celebrated.

Co-founder and Chief Encourager for Acton Academy

ABOUT LAURA SANDEFER

Laura Sandefer is an author and the co-founder of Acton Academy, a school whose learner-driven model is spreading across the globe with over 130 locations in Texas, Arizona, New Mexico, Guatemala, Canada, Malaysia and more, and in 2019 is celebrating 10 years of letting children take learning into their owns hands.

Acton Academy bases their model of learning on the Hero’s Journey: a story pattern common in ancient myths and modern day adventures in which a hero goes on an adventure, wins a victory and comes home transformed. Children at Acton Academy know why they are being challenged to learn — they are on their own Hero’s Journey to find their passion in life.

Acton Academy and Sandefer have been featured in the Austin American Statesman, Inc., Forbes, National Review, Huffington Post and more. Sandefer has a bachelor of arts and masters of education degrees from Vanderbilt University. She currently lives in Austin, Texas with her husband, children and three dogs.

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