Why School Sucks (hint: it’s not because it’s “boring”)
Isabella Bruyere

Dear Isabella,

Changing what you describe has become a passion and a mission for me. I am a children’s book author and illustrator who creates programs that help kids discover and grow who they are.

One of my own pet peeves is the idea of perfection. I discovered it was a problem when reading to third graders who told me “not perfect” means you are stupid, bad, broken, messy, dirty, ugly, and a loser. I have a list of more than 35 adjectives I’ve collected from kids around the world. Yes, it is a global issue. The idea that eight, nine, and ten year olds feel there is something wrong with them because they’re not perfect made me very sad. Thinking you must be perfect also creates competition, comparison, and a lot of stress. Kids who are stressed do not learn well, as I’m sure you know.

As a result of my discovery, I wrote “The Not Perfect Hat Club,” and started a global reading, writing and creativity challenge so kids could connect and learn from and with each other. If you’re curious, visit http://notperfecthatclub.com

I will also be starting a podcast soon and would love your input and to find a way to get you and other kids involved. In the meantime, know that both I and many others involved in education understand your frustrations and agree that things need to change. Together we can make that change happen.

Thank you for your terrific post.

Jena Ball