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October 16, 2020 53 min

Imagine being more than 2,500 feet above the ground; with no harness, no ropes and no safety equipment. Alex Hannold scaled Yosemite’s El Capitan solo, seemingly effortlessly and with great command over the rock. The most remarkable aspect of the near impossible feat of accomplishment is Alex’s grit, a strength-based psychological skill that propels most humans to carve out a path to reach goals that are once thought to be unattainable. The question is, can we cultivate grit?

On this episode, educational scholar, lecturer in Curriculum & Instruction at Baylor University, and author of “A student’s guide to grit and greatness”, Dr. Laila Y. Sanguras, discusses how we can help kids recognize the value of effort influenced achievement. By focusing on grit, educators can unveil the secret that anyone who is at the top of their game got there by practicing the invisible micro skills, enduring  innumerable obstacles and committing to life’s big goals.

About Dr. Laila Sanguras
Laila Y. Sanguras, Ph.D., is a lecturer in the department of Curriculum & Instruction and co-editor of the Gifted Education Review, a newsletter for teachers and parents of gifted children. Dr. Sanguras earned a B.S. in education from Western Oregon University, followed by a master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Portland State University and Ph.D. in educational research from the University of North Texas.

Dr. Sanguras’ primary scholarly interest is the development of psychosocial skills, particularly grit and coping, and how teachers and parents can support their children to succeed academically and personally. She works closely with school districts and parent organizations to bring research to practice. Dr. Sanguras also presents at numerous professional conferences and enjoys mentoring students on their personal research projects.


  • Books/Materials:

  • Grit in the Classroom: Building Perseverance for Excellence in Today's Students
  • Raising Children with Grit: Parenting Passionate, Persistent, and Successful Kids
  • Educator's Quick Reference Guide to Grit in the Classroom
  • About Host, Sucheta Kamath
    Sucheta Kamath, is an award-winning speech-language pathologist, a TEDx speaker, a celebrated community leader, and the founder and CEO of ExQ®. As an EdTech entrepreneur, Sucheta has designed ExQ's personalized digital learning curriculum/tool that empowers middle and high school students to develop self-awareness and strategic thinking skills through the mastery of Executive Function and social-emotional competence.

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