My son learned a valuable lesson recently about perseverance and hard work.
He was just below the cut-off for admittance into the advanced math program for next year based on a set of criteria the school uses to divide the groups, and we were informed that he would be placed in the standard math program again. This year, he had been near the top of his group as far as ability, but wasn’t giving it his all (partially because he was not being challenged and pushed to do more), and this showed in his test grades and participation in class. Our hope all along was that a more challenging environment would motivate him to be more engaged, as he seems to understand the material.
When contacted about the idea of advanced placement, his teacher said he was probably not a good candidate for it based on her observations. He had also struggled early in the year with the assessment tests, so that was another strike against him. But we knew he had developed over the year, become more accustomed to a new school environment, and he had been doing extra math work on the side to prepare for the advanced class. We met with the placement coordinator and came to an agreement to let my son take the assessment exam once more to see if the information to coordinator had access to was no longer valid.
With a LOT of hard work and dedication over the past few weeks, he was able to excel at the exam and clear the hurdle of getting into the higher math class. More importantly, he learned a few things about life in general:
- Perception is everything even when it is not reality (his own teacher’s perception of his work ethic in class was a deciding factor in her recommendation to not place him).
- You need to constantly work toward your goals, and not take your foot off the gas. Coasting is not an option.
- Hard work beats big dreams when it comes to getting things done.
While big dreams and aspirations all great, you need to control your own destiny to some extent, and show up and participate to actually see results and make your dreams come true.
Now get back to work!