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The Rest of Us

Posted: March 4, 2021

By George Siegal, Parent and Filmmaker

Looking back on my high school days, I remember those kids who seemed to “get it.” They understood why they were there and what they were hoping to accomplish. Then there was the rest of us, messing up and learning life’s lessons the hard way. What made the kids that seemed to have it all together different? I believe they were either born with certain “life skills” or somebody taught them those skills – maybe a parent, grandparent, educator, coach, or sibling. The rest of us certainly weren’t learning these skills. Not in my school, at least.

As I grew older and saw the Overcoming Obstacles curriculum firsthand, it made me frustrated that nobody taught this to me when I was in school. Over the years, I have met kids who had incredibly difficult life situations, and I saw how the curriculum their Overcoming Obstacles teacher brought to them literally saved their lives. Kids dealing with far worse situations than I did when I was their age. But if somebody had helped me learn problem solving, goal setting, and conflict resolution, it could have possibly led me down a better path for my life.

As a parent, I see my kids learning academics in school, but there are no classes focused on teaching life skills. And when I ask the principal or teachers, many of them are so bogged down with the challenges they face every day that they are reluctant to take on something else. But that “something else” will make everything else they do better. It will focus their kids and make them better students. If you are an educator and want to help your students succeed, this is something that will help them not only become better students, but better people. Overcoming Obstacles has made the materials easy to access, and in this budget-slashing world they won’t cost you anything. I’d argue the cost of not teaching life skills is far greater.

You can download the entire Overcoming Obstacles K-12 curriculum by logging in to your account. If you don’t yet have one, registering is fast, easy, and free—now and forever. Click here to get started. And if you think other educators would find Overcoming Obstacles’ lessons beneficial for their students, please share this blog with them.