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Challenge Success: Finding Balance with Dr. Denise Pope

Dr. Dan welcomes the amazing educator, author, and co-founder of Challenge Success Dr. Denise Pope on this episode. The show focuses on helping our children and our schools (and ultimately our families) find balance and deal with stress. This is a provocative topic and will challenge parents everywhere.

Dr. Pope explains success is not linear. Her work aims to turn our thinking about learning, education, and success upside down. Dr. Pope believes success is measured over the course of a lifetime (not in one semester) and believes that our society has become too focused on grades, test scores, and performance, leaving little time for kids to develop the necessary skills to become resilient, ethical, and motivated learners.

Dr. Dan and Dr. Pope dive deep into the topic of well-being and why she wants us all to move away from the narrow notion of success and expand our definition of it. Our children are suffering (as a result of sleep deprivation, depression, anxiety and more – all triggered by stress) and it has to stop. Dr. Pope shares solutions with Dr. Dan and explains how Challenge Success provides families and schools with practical, research-based tools they need to create a more balanced and academically fulfilling life for their kids.

Finally Dr. Pope’s discussion about the topic of an engaged child and student is revolutionary.  This concept applies to parents and students alike. The whole child matters!

Dr. Pope’s Parent Footprint moment is very insightful and also personal. The story about picking up her own daughter in first grade and always asking how she did on her spelling test was a light-bulb moment because it gave her insight into the stress her own child was experiencing as a result of this conversation.  It became an important “a-ha” moment in her own parenting journey and of course in her work.

Denise Pope, Ph.D., is a Senior Lecturer at the Stanford University Graduate School of Education, and co-founder of Challenge Success. She is the author of “Doing School”: How We Are Creating a Generation of Stressed Out, Materialistic, and Miseducated Students (Yale University Press, 2001), and co-author of Overloaded and Underprepared: Strategies for Stronger Schools and Healthy, Successful Kids (Jossey-Bass, 2015).

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