Well-rounded Valedictorian

For your consideration:

If I don’t hold myself back, I would probably just quote the whole article to you — but you can go read it.

Some things to think about, depending on which stage you’re at in your homeschooling:

If you’re just getting started:
“Following the rules doesn’t create success; it just eliminates extremes—both good and bad. While this is usually good and all but eliminates downside risk, it also frequently eliminates earthshaking accomplishments. It’s like putting a governor on your engine that stops the car from going over fifty-five; you’re far less likely to get into a lethal crash, but you won’t be setting any land speed records either.”

If you’re trying to figure out how to grade your child’s work:
“Most of the subjects in the study were classified as “careerists”: they saw their job as getting good grades, not really as learning.”

If your kid seems to have only one or two things *he’s interested in:
“”If you want to do well in school and you’re passionate about math, you need to stop working on it to make sure you get an A in history too. This generalist approach doesn’t lead to expertise. Yet eventually we almost all go on to careers in which one skill is highly rewarded and other skills aren’t that important.”

When that same kid just keeps getting deeper and deeper into that subject, to the exclusion of other subjects:
“Ironically, Arnold found that intellectual students who enjoy learning struggle in high school. They have passions they want to focus on, are more interested in achieving mastery, and find the structure of school stifling. Meanwhile, the valedictorians are intensely pragmatic. They follow the rules and prize A’s over skills and deep understanding.”

As you’re trying to figure out what to put on h** transcript, and you’re worried that it might stand out from the pack — consider that colleges, although they do prize previous academic achievement know this:

“School has clear rules. Life often doesn’t. When there’s no clear path to follow, academic high achievers break down. Shawn Achor’s research at Harvard shows that college grades aren’t any more predictive of subsequent life success than rolling dice. A study of over seven hundred American millionaires showed their average college GPA was 2.9.”

~Jen GS (whose kidlet has all kinds of crazy things on her very atypical transcript).