By Lesley Schwartz Martin
Zest Books, $14.99, 143 pages
Parents of high school and middle school kids take note: Lesley Schwartz Martin has published an excellent guide for learning to enjoy academia. Make the Grade: Everything You Need to Study Better, Stress Less, and Succeed in School astutely strikes that balance between appealing to a teen mindset and challenging teens to strive for more. With teen-friendly side bars, charts, and maps, Make the Grade encourages students to do more than just pass each new class: “School shouldn’t be just about surviving,” Martin writes in her introduction. “It should also be about having a great time, and setting yourself up for the life you want to live when school is over.”
“Successful students do a few things that help them quickly make their mark in the classroom. They make a good impression, stay on top of their work, participate actively in class, and know how to get and stay focused”
In Chapter 2, for examples, Martin describes the difference between those who have a “fixed mindset” (“I’m only so smart or talented”) and those who have a “growth mindset” (“If I work hard, I can do better”). The latter will undoubtedly emerge ready and able to embrace the new challenges that high school brings, Martin concludes.
Reviewed by Jennie A. Harrop