Our Productive Struggle:
What We Believe About Sunset Park High School’s Instructional Focus
At Sunset Park High School, we are all learners, always.
As students, we believe, that in order to be able to engage in and learn from our struggles--to make Struggle Productive--learners need:
Effective Support Systems
● Learners need support from someone else in their lives, at least one other person, as well as a supportive learning community.
● The attributes of a supportive community include:
o Effective communication
o Encouraging each other
o Sharing belief in each other’s potential and ambitions
o Discussing other ways to power through struggle
● In addition, learners need to work collaboratively, which means asking for help when you need it and providing help to other students.
Positive Attitude and Mindset
● In order to learn from a productive struggle, a person should have courage and be positive. A student should take risks and jump at any opportunity given to achieve success in school and in life. A risk should not be looked at as daunting, but rather a chance to become a better person, whether they fail or succeed.
● In addition, a person should have a positive attitude and mindset. Remaining optimistic is essential in life because it allows a person to look at the glass half full, instead of half empty. One way a person can remain positive is to have faith in yourself or in an outcome. Through a positive mindset, a person can develop the feeling of never giving up and pushing to the limit.
To Plan for Success and Follow Through
● Before attacking a problem or idea you have, you need to have a plan. Planning organizes your thoughts and provides steps that you can follow. This plan has to come from something you see as an issue that you want to fix. With planning, you cannot expect to accomplish everything at once as progress happens over time.
● Setting goals is imperative because it forces you to think of the future whether it’s short or long term. In addition, it motivates you to better yourself and it gives you a deeper understanding of life. However, it is also fundamental to make these goals realistic. Realistic goals are those that are possible to achieve.
● Once you have a realistic plan and have set goals for yourself, it is also important to understand that learning through struggle takes practice and time.
Authenticity and Engagement
● Learning through struggle means doing something that is meaningful to you. When you engage with something meaningful, it doesn’t feel like a chore. If you enjoy something you are working on, you will feel more passionate. This is important not only for school, but for happiness in life outside of school and in your community in the future.
And, remember, the struggle is real . . . productive.