Character – Claim 1

Campbell students are becoming effective learners by exhibiting perseverance in challenging situations.

To increase student stamina when faced with difficult or longer tasks, perseverance was selected as a character focus to support academic targets in both language arts and math. Students were introduced to growth mindset vocabulary and parents reported that students even used the language at home. Examples of perseverance were highlighted at student led Community Meetings. Students created anchor charts and signage which identified strategies to promote grit and growth mindsets.

Perseverance data-click for readable view

Student Perseverance

On the Campbell report card, one of the Habits of Scholarship is “I can persevere through difficult problems.” In the first quarter of 2015, 31% of students were able to consistently persevere. The graph below shows the increased percentage of Campbell students being able to persevere over a 4 year period. By the 4th quarter of 2017-2018, 76% of 380 Campbell students in K-5 were able to consistently persevere through difficult problems in classwork.

Additionally, on the Spring 2018 site based survey, Campbell 5th graders responded in the following manner:

  • 89% of students reported that when they feel like giving up on a difficult task, teachers encourage them to keep trying.
  • 93% of students reported that their teachers believe they can do extremely well or quite well in school.
  • 87% of students reported that teachers encourage them to do their best.

The responses related to student and family engagement were more favorable than responses at other APS elementary schools.

Classroom Data
The following classroom data indicates that students showed improved perseverance on academic tasks in the 2017-2018 school year.

Silent Reading Stamina graph - click for readable view

Reading Perseverance

The graph on the left shows that students in one third grade classroom were able to read silently for at least 18 minutes. Many students were able to read silently for as long as 35 minutes. The data chart shows how each student improved.

Math Stamina graph - click for readable view.

Math Stamina

Students as shown in the graph to the right, used perseverance as a strategy to build stamina when faced with challenging math problems. This data shows that 80% of students were able to increase the amount of time and effort spent on open-ended math problems by the end of the school year. 


Student Work and Classroom Examples
In the 2017-2018 school year, students used a template to reflect on their perseverance throughout the school year. Students defined what perseverance meant to them and explained how they showed perseverance in the classroom. Students self-assessed by using a target three times throughout the year. They also had to document evidence and examples of times in which they persevered. At the end of the year all students were able to see, with the visual target, their written explanations and the progress they made with their goals.

Grade 3 Sample Portfolio Reflections                      Kindergarten Sample Portfolio Reflections

3rd gr Portfolio    3rd gr student portfolio             Kindergarten reflection work    Grade K Reflection
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Student Reflections
In 2019, student reflections continued to reference perseverance without teacher prompting. Students Student portfolio reflectioncontinued to describe their work and academic progress using growth mindset language and emphasized perseverance. Students had the vocabulary and tools to talk about their work from a positive mindset which allows them to demonstrate pride in their accomplishments.Student portfolio reflection


3rd Grade Literary Award Portfolio Project-Student work

Click images for larger view.

Students in 3rd grade demonstrated mastery of comprehension of fictional stories by creating book awards. Students were able to self-select their book and their area of focus. This student work featured to the left focused on theme and the student named her award, “The Perseverance Award.” Throughout the project she highlighted what perseverance means to her and why it is an important character trait to celebrate.


Classroom Anchor Charts and Student Work
Students used perseverance checklists in classrooms. They defined perseverance in their own words and engaged in conversations about what persevering might look or sound like in their classroom. The student-created anchor chart displays different strategies students can try if they face challenges in their work.  Below are illustrative examples:

School wide Perseverance Checklist             Perseverance anchor chart with student generated examples             Student created anchor chart
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Students participate in lessons and experiences within the classroom, which foster opportunities for the use of various perseverance strategies. An example of this is shown within a first grade classroom during the 2018-2019 school year. Each week, students participate in a STEM challenge and work on the challenge in partners or groups. At the end of the week, each student writes a reflection about the challenge. Below are two examples of reflections. In the first picture the student says, “Me and my partner kept trying….but we never gave up.” In the second photograph of student work, the author wrote about how he persevered by trying to build the snowman multiple times before he succeeded.

Student stem challenge         Snowman
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Students self-reflect on their ability to preserve and work through difficult concepts at the beginning, middle and end of the unit or just at the start and end of the unit. Students are able to show growth over time through learning new strategies, problem solving skills, and participating in mini lessons and discussions on growth mindset. The pictures below show students self-assessing based on the math learning target.

Perseverance anchor chart-money .     students-money anchor chart
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Growth Mindset
Growth mindset is a tool students use to help them persevere through challenges they face within their work. Fifth grade students created a video for parents to understand growth mindset. Click here to view the video. The video explains what growth mindset means to each student and why it is important to remember in school.

Student growth mindset signClick image for larger view.

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