Failure Is an Option

Failure Is an Option

Every great invention, accomplishment, or idea begins with a first step. And often that first step leads not to success, but to failure.

Olympians do not win medals on their first try.
The Wright Brothers did not fly on their first attempt.
And Thomas Edison did not invent the lightbulb immediately after imagining it:

"How did it feel to fail 1,000 times?” A reporter asked.
Edison replied, "I didn’t fail 1,000 times. The light bulb was an invention with 1,000 steps.”

Edison can teach us about embracing failure as part of the learning process. At ARCHES Academy we believe that failure is an option! In fact, it’s probably the most common option when learning something new.

Failure is OK. It’s how we learn!

At ARCHES, we know that setbacks build resilience. Resilience is our ability to bounce back from, and even flourish, amidst obstacles. The key to using failure as a way to build resilience, is to view each setback as a learning experience. We ask: What did you learn from this failure? What can you do differently next time? What more do I need to know or do before I try again?

We view failure in a positive light.
Here are a few things you’ll see us do at ARCHES to create a community of resilient risk-takers:

We reframe failure.
We normalize the struggle. We ask students to pause, reflect and try to understand that what they are experiencing is part of the normal human experience. We celebrate failure as part of the process of learning, not a reason to give up.

We reward (safe) risk-taking.
The journey of a 1000 miles begins with a single step. And sometimes the first step can be the toughest. We believe that healthy risk taking behavior leads to greatness. Get started and see what happens!

We encourage a growth mindset.
Students with a growth mindset see mistakes as ways to learn, embrace challenges, and persist in the face of setbacks. How can we grow from feedback?

We rally around our students who try hard things!
A strong support team, who cheer you on and help pick you up when you fall, is a wonderful safety net when we fail. ARCHES teachers have our students’ backs when they fail and try again!

We teach our students to have mental toughness.
Our Warrior Ethos teaches children not to back down in the face of challenge. How can we view disappointment as part of the process and keep going?

A poster titled Warrior Ethos illustrates a list of values that ARCHES Academy uses for character education

Grit, determination, and resiliency are learned traits that we develop as we try new things. If we persevere when things get hard, we become stronger. At ARCHES, we embrace the word “yet” in our vocabulary.

  • ”I haven’t learned my multiplication tables, yet.
  • “I can’t yet figure out how to solve this problem so it’s a win-win.”
  • “I’m not ready to perform in the talent show, yet.

The word “yet” signals to students that it’s ok to take your time and not succeed the first time. We can stumble and still keep trying. Failure is an option on the way to success. After all, anything worth doing is worth doing poorly.

Imagine where we would be today if failure stopped people from trying something new. What modern conveniences would we be without? What knowledge would we lack?

Our successes are that much sweeter at ARCHES because we have truly earned them.
We celebrate risk taking, doing your best, getting up, and trying again. When you enroll at ARCHES Academy, you join a community of learners who embrace the process and celebrate growth. It’s an incredibly rewarding way to learn.

About ARCHES Academy

Our commitment is to help each K-8 learner achieve mastery of the standards by use of authentic learning experiences, coaching and mentoring, freedom of choice, and personal responsibility. At ARCHES Academy, our educational approach produces outstanding individuals who not only have acquired exceptional literacy in the arts and sciences, but mastery over self and true leadership ability. Enrolling K-8 tuition-free today!