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Character Trait of the Month

Character Trait- Perseverance

Taken from


What is the definition of perseverance?

Perseverance is the ability and self-control that pushes you to work through challenges. Having perseverance means that when you are facing a challenge, you use your mind and your body to overcome it. Perseverance means you are able to wait and work through difficulties, whether they have to do with your mind, your body, or your emotions. 

Why is perseverance important for kids?

Perseverance is very important for kids to develop because life is full of challenges-- and perseverance is what helps you get through the difficulties to get to what you want. Sometimes the challenge is something hard for your body, like raking the leaves out of the entire yard or staying strong at the end of a long sports match. Sometimes it’s a challenge for your mind, like learning a new math equation or staying focused on something you need to do when you really want to be doing something else. Sometimes challenges are emotional like when you’re sad after a pet dies or when a friendship is breaking. 

No matter what the challenge, perseverance is important because it is the drive that helps you get through the obstacle to the easier bit on the other side. Even though it feels so hard when you are working through a challenge, perseverance keeps pushing you through to your goal and to the good feeling that comes with knowing you did your best. 

Taking the easy way out by cheating, quitting, or avoiding a situation doesn’t make the challenge go away. It just makes you have to deal with it at a different time. Perseverance helps you get through the challenge, even though it’s hard, and gives you that warm feeling in your heart of knowing you did the right thing.

More and more experts are arguing that perseverance (also called grit), along with other performance values, is essential to kids’ future success. We tend to think that encouraging kids means telling them they’re smart or great at soccer, or otherwise doling out praise. But telling a child he is smart is far less effective than rewarding him for hard work. In fact, rewarding intelligence instead of perseverance tends to restrict children, encouraging them to shy away from new challenges and even lie to avoid proving they aren’t as smart as their parents tell them they are. Why is perseverance important for kids? Because teaching a child to persevere through challenges gives her the work ethic to be a responsible and resilient adult. Here are some great ideas for building perseverance in students.