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Description du produit

Revue de presse

"I wish I could take this compact, powerful, clear-eyed, beautifully written book and put it in the hands of every parent, teacher and politician. At its core is a notion that is electrifying in its originality and its optimism: that character – not cognition – is central to success, and that character can be taught. How Children Succeed will change the way you think about children. But more than that: it will fill you with a sense of what could be." (Alex Kotlowitz, author of There Are No Children Here)

"Every parent should read this book – and every policymaker, too." (Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit)

"A timely and essential message … a brilliantly readable account of the growing evidence that inner resources count more than any amount of extra teaching support or after-school programmes when it comes to overcoming education disadvantage" (Independent)

"Absorbing and important." (New York Times)

Présentation de l'éditeur

Why character, confidence, and curiosity are more important to your child’s success than academic results. The New York Times bestseller. For all fans of Oliver James or Steve Biddulph’s Raising Boys, Raising Girls, and The Complete Secrets of Happy Children.


In a world where academic success can seem all-important in deciding our children’s success in adult life, Paul Tough sees things very differently.

Instead of fixating on grades and exams, he argues that we, as parents, should be paying more attention to our children’s characters.

Inner resilience, a sense of curiosity, the hidden power of confidence - these are the most important things we can teach our children, because it is these qualities that will enable them to live happy, fulfilled and successful lives.

In this personal, thought-provoking and timely book, Paul Tough offers a clarion call to parents who are seeking to unlock their child’s true potential – and ensure they really succeed.

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Format: Relié
*A full executive summary of this book will be available at the website newbooksinbrief dot wordpress dot com, on or before Monday September 17.

When it comes to a child's future success, the prevailing view recently has been that it depends, first and foremost, on mental skills like verbal ability, mathematical ability, and the ability to detect patterns--all of the skills, in short, that lead to a hefty IQ. However, recent evidence from a host of academic fields--from psychology, to economics, to education, to neuroscience--has revealed that there is in fact another ingredient that contributes to success even more so than a high IQ and impressive cognitive skills. This factor includes the non-cognitive qualities of perseverance, conscientiousness, optimism, curiosity and self-discipline--all of which can be included under the general category of `character'. In his new book `How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity and the Hidden Power of Character' writer Paul Tough explores the science behind these findings, and also tracks several alternative schools, education programs and outreach projects that have tried to implement the lessons--as well as the successes and challenges that they have experienced.

To begin with, Tough establishes how study after study has now shown that while IQ and scores on standardized tests are certainly highly correlated with academic and future success, that non-cognitive characteristics actually predict success better than cognitive excellence. For instance, the psychologist Angela Duckworth has found that students' scores on self-discipline tests predict their GPA better than their IQ score.
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C'est un excellent livre ou il présente comment les enfants peuvent apprendre et developper certains attitudes qui leur permet de poursuivre une vie epanuissante.
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Intéressant quant au principe de l'éducation devant aussi prendre en compte le développement du caractère de l'enfant ; par moments des digressions et enquêtes un peu touffues.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 étoiles sur 5 838 commentaires
367 internautes sur 382 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 The power of early parenting, environment in cyclical poverty 11 septembre 2012
Par Graham Scharf - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
Following the footsteps of Jonathan Kozol, Paul Tough employs his significant storytelling abilities to help readers see and feel the plight of children, families and communities trapped in cycles of failure and poverty. How Children Succeed challenges some conventional wisdom on causes of failure (poverty, teacher quality) and contends that nurturing character in children and young adults is the key to success. As a former NYC Teaching Fellow who has lived and worked in multiple communities of cyclical poverty, I'm convinced that Tough has nailed some critical pieces of breaking those cycles.

Here is the argument in brief:
==============================
There exists in our society a troubling and growing achievement gap between the have and the have-nots. The cause of that gap is neither merely poverty nor IQ, but a specific set of non-cognitive skills including executive function and conscientiousness, which Tough calls "character." Children who acquire these skills can break historic cyclical patterns of failure.

Malleability of Character and Intelligence
==========================================
Whereas IQ is hardly malleable, executive function and character strengths - specifically grit, self-control, zest, social intelligence, gratitude, optimism, curiosity and conscientiousness - are far more malleable. These skills are better predictors of academic performance and educational achievement than IQ and therefore ought to be the direct target of interventions.

Attachment and Lifelong Health
==============================
Tough sees two key areas of influence for those who care for those trapped in cycles of poverty. The first is secure early attachment to parents. "The effect of good parenting is not just emotional or psychological, the neuroscientists say; it is biochemical" (28). Specifically, children who experience high levels of stress but NOT responsive and nurturing parents suffer from a range of lifelong health and mental health issues. However, "When mothers scored high on measures of responsiveness, the impact of those environmental factors on their children seemed to almost disappear" (32). Tough cites one study in which "early parental care predicted which students would graduate even more reliably than IQ or achievement test scores" (36). Importantly, interventions that focus on promoting stronger parent-child relationships in high risk groups (including one in which just 1 of 137 infants studied demonstrated secure attachment at the outset) have shown promising impact. Of the 137 children in the study, 61% of those in the treatment group formed secure attachment by age 2, compared with only 2% of the control group.

Adolescent Character Formation
==============================
Paul Tough highlights the work of school and support programs that intentionally focus on forming the character strength habits that enable children to learn well in schools, form healthy relationships, and avoid the destructive decisions and behavior patterns modeled in their communities. Here, too, Tough sees a ray of hope. Just as early intervention with parents and young children yields wide ranging benefits for families in poverty, so character interventions in adolescence can and do enable young adults surrounded by cycles of poverty to learn self-control, perseverance and focus that are critical for escaping the gravitational pull of their communities.

Why You Should Read This Book
=============================
Paul Tough is tackling one of the most challenging - and contentious - issues of our time. His analysis will offend those who tend to blame poverty predominantly on the irresponsible choices of the poor by showing just how powerful the cyclical, environmental pressures are on children raised in these communities. His work is just as challenging to those who think that those trapped in cycles of poverty are mere victims of their environment who bear no responsibility for their decisions. Tough shows compellingly that parents and children in poverty can and do overcome the powerful environmental forces of their communities - and that this is a beautiful and essential component of breaking cyclical poverty. His call is for those with education and influence - the kinds of people who read books like his - to demonstrate motivation and volition (two components of character formation he extols) to recognize, celebrate, and nurture the character of children and families in poverty.

Graham Scharf
Author, The Apprenticeship of Being Human: Why Early Childhood Parenting Matters to Everyone
[...]
21 internautes sur 22 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Really drops off after the first two chapters 25 avril 2014
Par Andrew Chandler - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
Paul Toughs book starts out with a few great chapters challenging the conventional thoughts of why children in poverty do not complete their education. The basic premise student intelligence or teacher quality is not near as important as performance character traits, such as grit, executive function, self-control, optimism. These are traits that are easily formed in children growing up in stress free environments with plenty of parent attention and affection, but are missing is children growing up in poverty with disjointed families, drug abuse, and other forms of chronic stress.

But after these first few chapters, the book really falters. Its like the book is a collection of essays or articles on school reform, which are then tacked together loosely with this idea of character helping children succeed. And while each chapter is well researched and referenced, the cumulative result is a lot of contradictory data, and no response to the question you wish this book would answer: How do children succeed?

What do I mean by contradictory data? Well, despite the premise that teacher quality does not matter much, the book spends a lot of time praising innovative teachers or teaching programs. Despite giving research to show that ACT/SAT scores are not a good indicator of college graduation, he examines how some schools have been successful in getting their povery students into colleges by cramming them for the ACT tests. And despite showing how learning chess can teach character skills like patience, determination, etc, the book also demonstrates that skills on the chess board do not necessarily translate to skills in the classroom or in the real world. Near the end of the book, Tough even admits that all of the studies that have identified what matters most in raising test scores and graduation rates of children living in poverty is misleading, because in reality the majority of improvements found by these innovative teaching methods are found in children that are poor enough to qualify for school meal plans, but not technically living below the poverty line.

Perhaps the most upsetting point of the book was near the end when Tough (who grew up middle to upper middle class) tries to relate to the poverty students by describing the time he dropped out of Columbia his freshman year and using his tuition money to take a Kerouac-esque bicycle trip. Tough uses this story to describe how this trip helped him take risks and build character traits that were not formed in school, and how this helped him succeed. I am uncomfortable with comparing a person with the financial means and support to voluntarily quit school, knowing his family is there as a safety net, to go play hooky, and a person living in poverty subjected to various external stresses, but is able to have the self control to focus and better themselves.

In the end, the hypothesis Tough proposed early in this book is contradicted by his later chapters, and the question of how all children can succeed is never answered. Implementation of the subject matter is this book is absent besides hugging your children.
9 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Masterfully written AND scientifically accurate, will move you and make you rethink some "common sense" assumptions 3 décembre 2012
Par ItalCali - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
Paul Tough's conclusions can be summed up very briefly:
- the biggest obstacle to academic & life success is a home & a community that create high levels of stress, and the absence of a secure relationship with a caregiver that would allow a child to manage stress;
- non-cognitive skills, like conscientiousness, grit, resilience, perseverance and optimism are more important than cognitive skills for young people to succeed in life;
- character matters; as the author points out, conservatives are right about this. But character is molded by the environment and as a society we can do a lot to influence its development in children; as the author points out, liberals are right about this. "We now know a great deal about what kind of interventions will help children develop those strengths and skills, starting at birth and going all the way through college." (p. 196).

To get to those conclusions the author takes the reader on a very interesting journey, and that is what makes the book superb. It is well written and a treasure throve of scientific insights and cutting edge research, with moving stories about students, teachers and schools that make the science alive. Mr. Tough introduces the reader to innovative interventions for children and adolescents while painting insightful portraits of the people at the forefront in the quest to develop (or at least not squander) the human capital of this nation.

I felt the author's position was very balanced. While looking for successes in his reporting, he does not shy away from highlighting the difficulties and the unknown: e.g., he puts the early successful KIPP's results into perspective, with the good, the bad and what can be done differently; you got a sense this topic is still a work in progress; he makes it very clear that "No one [author's emphasis] has found a reliable way to help deeply disadvantaged children, in fact."(p. 193).
But overall there is a sense that, in the end, we will figure it out. A sense of possibility.

For passion and for work I read a lot of books about psychology, neuroscience & leadership / personal development. I always learn a lot.
But this book is different. Not only did I learn a lot. I was also moved.
I was totally absorbed and emotionally involved in the stories of the kids the author features in his narrative.
Mr Tough says that when he spent time with these young people he felt "a sense of anger for what they've already missed."
I felt the same way - and that goes to his credit. I almost feel as if I personally know little James Black or Kewauna. I did get mad on their behalf.
Mr. Tough also says he had a second reaction: "a feeling of admiration and hope when I watch young people making the difficult and often painful choice to follow a better path, to turn away from what might have seemed like their inevitable destiny." (p. 197).
That is what I felt as well - again, to Mr. Tough's credit.

I am already doing some volunteer work with Big Brothers, Big Sisters.
But you get sucked in the local situation and your horizons get narrower.
Reading this book widened my perspective and made me fully appreciate the depth of the problem but also the promise of better days to come if we embrace a new way to tackle it.
So I made the resolution to get more involved next year.

Here is my recommendation: read the book.
You will learn a lot - about neuroscience, about parenting, about teaching and about what makes people successful.
You will meet some young people who deserve all of our respect and admiration.
Hopefully, you will be moved as well to do something, even a little tiny bit, to make a difference.
3.0 étoiles sur 5 This generation specifically seems to give up easily. So 20 mai 2017
Par Nancy B - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
I purchased this book because of the title. As a teacher and a mom of three, I have noticed that my kids struggle with sticking through things when something gets tough. This generation specifically seems to give up easily. So, the word grit really stuck out to me.

What I discovered by reading this book, was what I already suspected. This is a lot of research on why grit is what makes a person successful, not academics; that character is the greatest predictor of success.

I kept reading chapter after chapter, hoping to hear some strategies on how I can help my kids build that character. While the author touches a little on some character education that was tried by others, I was left with nothing that I could use.

If I had picked up this book to use as a tool for proving that character is important, I would have appreciated it more. However, my intentions for reading the book was to develop more tools for my teaching tool box. The author does a fantastic job of looking at successful students of all classes and races. I appreciate his thoroughness in looking at how poverty affects students and the role a mother places in a child's early stages of life. I have worked in highly impoverished communities as well as wealthy neighborhoods with entitled children. Both communities have students who fail because of their lack of character.

Now, I am off to find something that will help my children find that grit needed to succeed. I am open to suggestions.
3 internautes sur 3 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Rethinking what's Important 25 janvier 2016
Par Steve Berczuk - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché Achat vérifié
When listening to news coverage of education reform and talking to parents and teachers one hears a variety of views about what "The Best" approach to education is. Reading How Children Succeed led me to reconsider may of my preconceptions about what's best for kids, and along the way I learned a few things that I can use to help the people I work with succeed.

The argument is that these "non-cognitive" or "character skills" -- things like grit, resilience, and resourcefulness, are often a better predictor of eventually success than mastery of academic skills. These non-cognitive skills are not all one needs, but they seem to be the least discussed ones. This is a great book for parents to read, in particular if you are inclined to get into discussions about education policy with your peers. I won't assert that this book will make you a expert, but it should lead to some interesting dialogs (internal and external) which will help you reconsider any idea you had that what worked for you in school was that right thing for your children.
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