What is this new buzzword “grit” anyways and why do we want our kids to have it?  It sounds unpleasant, right?  It’s not.  It’s a goal for raising kiddos that know how to keep working hard towards a goal even when times get tough.  Check out these pretty quotes about grit.  (Even grit quotes can be pretty, right?)  Find out what grit is and how to inspire it in your kids; and maybe even in ourselves.  After all, the learning should never stop!

I’m no expert.  But I am a teacher and a mama with definite opinions about the experts opinions.  (That’s print worthy, right?) 

It all started with a little YouTube…

I recently watched a talk by Angela Duckworth on YouTube in which she talked about grit.  I’ve watched this talk more than once and rolled it around in my brain.  (Because over thinking is my specialty.)   This is worth checking out.

Grit is defined as being passionate and persevering in pursuit of long term dreams.  The theory of grit is all about being able to maintain effort despite failure, adversity, or challenges.  These all sound like things we want for our kids.  No one wants to raise a quitter, am I right?

As I watched Duckworth expound on her grit theory I was at once enthusiastically agreeing with her and reminded of groundbreaking “studies” that find that eating junk food makes kids fat.  Common sense.

What is this grit…

Grit is a lot like old fashioned hard work.  Grit is developed through being allowed to fail and try again.  The stakes of childhood are so high today that it’s harder to let our children fail than it might have been in past generations.  There is a lot riding on our kids success, even at a young age. 

Failure should be something kids are allowed to experience themselves and  also see in the adults surrounding them.  Let’s expose our kids to us adults trying weird ,new things and challenges.  Sometimes we’re successful and sometimes we’re not.  Failure isn’t a childish thing, it’s a human thing.  Successful people fail.

A healthy dose of passion….

Kids are never going to work tirelessly and passionately at something they don’t care about, nor will most adults.  Right?  Sure we do the work we have to do to get through requirements.  In our house we refer to that as “jumping through hoops.”  Sometimes you do what you have to do to get where you want to get.

But to develop real grit kids need a chance to feel passionately about something, to be truly invested in the outcome. Developing passions takes time.  And passions don’t always come in the form of weekly scheduled classes or afterschool clubs.  Kids need time and lots of experiences to even know what they might want to invest themselves in.  Heck, I’m forty and still deciding. 

At our house we are currently tending some passions that I would have never guessed.  I have a son that adores trap shooting.  He loves guns and bows and all things outdoorsy.  All of these are things we, as a family, have no knowledge of or way to help guide him.  It has actually worked out amazing well.  These hobbies aren’t “our” thing as a family.  They are completely his.  He knows more about these things than the rest of us put together.  Becasue he wants to be successful he puts in the time learning about them and becoming the family expert.

I walk slowly but I never walk backwards


Beside failure what really teaches grit…

What teaches kids that it’s not only acceptable but desirable to try new thing, fail, and try again?  A growth mindset, that’s what.   And those of you that read here at the Kitchen Table Classroom often know that I hold that idea near and dear to my heart. 

A growth mindset means a person can grow and change over time.  What you know and are today may not be where you stay forever.  People can grow, change, and learn at every stage of the game.

We are homeschoolers.  I teach four kids at four different levels many subjects each day.  One of my favorite things about our whole set up is learning is not just checking off boxes.  My kids are invested.  I am invested.  They see me learning new things beside them every single day (even though I am ancient in days.)

Check out this huge collection of growth mindset resources.  There are more pretty quotes, printable books, sketchbooks prompts, and book lists- all free!  These posts are some of my most popular posts ever and definitely some of my most encouraging!   Whether you’re a parent, a teacher, or a kid it is so reassuring to know it’s acceptable to drop the ball, mess up, or melt down.  It happens to the best of us and doesn’t define us.  Add in these quotes on grit and it’s such an encouraging place to be! 

quotes about grit

Some pretty quotes on grit….

The idea of grit isn’t so pretty, maybe.  But these free printable quotes about grit are.  Even though hard work is something that never really stops it doesn’t have to be a gloomy subject.  Work doesn’t need to be punishment.  Work gets us where we want to be.  That’s real life.

Hard work, whether it results in the desired outcome or not, is something to be celebrated and appreciated.  These quotes on grit should just be a gentle reminder, a little daily inspiration to keep on keeping on. 

quotes on grit


Let’s hear it from the experts….

I know how I was raised and how I feel about raising my own kids to be resilient and persevere in the face of difficulties.  But I am no expert.  

If you want to know the research behind “grittiness” and why it’s important check out a book or two from this list!  

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance 

Grit for Kids: 16 top steps for developing Grit, Passion, Willpower, and Perseverance in kids for self-confidence and a successful life 

How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character

Work Hard. Be Nice.: How Two Inspired Teachers Created the Most Promising Schools in America

Grit in the Classroom: Building Perseverance for Excellence in Today’s Students

Fostering Grit: How do I prepare my students for the real world?

Old School Grit: Times May Change, But the Rules for Success Never Do

GRIT to Go: Classroom-Ready Resources to Motivate Growth Mindsets

What Gritty Kids Do When No One Is Looking

The Formative Five: Fostering Grit, Empathy, and Other Success Skills Every Student Needs

My personal favorite of the moment is The Self-Driven Child: The Science and Sense of Giving Your Kids More Control Over Their Lives,” by William Stixrud PhD and Ned Johnson.  I wouldn’t say it’s specifically about developing grittiness in a kid.  The book is really more about getting out of your kid’s way and letting them make some real decisions in their life, even if that means making a mistake or two along the way.  It’s the opposite of helicopter parenting and presents the science to back it up!  This book is seriously my internal anthem as we begin our fourth homeschool year! 

books about developing grit in kids


Want grab these printable quotes about grit…

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printable quotes about grit

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