It’s a fair question. Our model for education differs wildly from what is traditional, and the vast majority of Tej Acton parents are taking this leap of faith for the first time. So what can we do to ensure a high rate of return on this new experience?
Tip #1: Never compare your child’s journey to that of another. Instead, compare their position now to where they were last week/month/year.
Our method at Tej Acton is to challenge each learner at their own level. This means not setting arbitrary academic goals that everyone in a class must meet simultaneously. Rather, we aim to meet every student where they are in their journey of education and provide them tools to grow.
Doing this will help your child embrace who they are, what they are capable of, and how they learn best. Once they do that, they’ll be able to enjoy the learning process much more, and continue forward at a challenging pace.
Everyone learns at their own speed, and deciding what an ‘appropriate’ pace looks like ahead of time is only going to handicap the learner one way or another.
Tip #2: Celebrate small failures as learning opportunities.
Failing is an important part of the learning process. Every Michelin star chef has burned an entree, and no pitcher in history has ever thrown a no-hitter on their very first game. Begin helping your child to cultivate a healthy relationship with failure and you will enable them to take risks in pursuit of greatness.
What does that look like? Praising a growth mindset over results.
Each small failure is a building block toward future success, and should be valued as such. Perceived failures are the experiences that build confidence and resilience when they are embraced.
The fear of failure is one of the biggest hindrances to growth, and you can encourage your child to become more resilient and confident by celebrating their failures (and your own.)
Tip #3: Recognize and encourage your child’s character development.
At Tej Acton, we prioritize character development above all else. (Yes, even above academic growth.) We are concerned with growing a whole, complete child, not just their ability to take tests and memorize facts.
Resilience, empathy, discipline, open-mindedness, creativity—these are important aspects in the growth of a well-rounded person that cannot easily be quantified, but they can be observed.
Offer your children frequent examples to follow and recognition when they show character growth. In our studios, we have daily discussions that reinforce the value of these qualities, and provide challenges that give students the opportunity to exhibit them for themselves.
A child’s character growth will be further reinforced when we recognize their ability to navigate life’s bumps in the road for themselves, rather than attempting to smooth out all the bumps for them.
Bonus Tip: Don’t forget that you are also on a journey of growth and discovery!
The single most important step you can take (in this guide’s opinion) for your child’s growth is to model the behavior and qualities you wish to see in them.
In short: join them on a journey of growth and discovery!
Tej Acton doesn’t exist in a miracle universe where every lesson is absorbed and immediately implemented by your child. Growth takes time; and the lessons they learn at school will be far more impactful if they are mirrored at home.
So, some parting advice:
Try to accept where you are in your life’s journey and challenge yourself to grow daily.
Allow your child to see you fail, and admit when you’re wrong.
Practice exhibiting the character qualities you value highly in your children.
Good luck on your journey, everyone.
Elementary Studio Guide, Tej Acton Academy