SEL Tools for Back to School
In this issue of Upbeat News, we’re focusing on social and emotional skills to help you hit your stride this year, no matter what comes your way. You’ll find book excerpts with tips to forgive yourself after mistakes, activities to develop a growth mindset in students, and a lesson to help build resilience. Click here to read book excerpts.

We’re also pleased to introduce you to our author Shannon Anderson, who embodies growth mindset. Check out her new books, Y Is for Yet and Mindset Power, below and learn more about why she was named one of the top 10 inspirational teachers by the Today show in 2019. Finally, our free download this month is a form that helps students with the problem-solving and decision-making process by using the “evaluate, select, proceed” method.
Special Offer
Get 30% off all titles* when you order over $50 from Sale ends August 31, 2020. Use code AUG30 at checkout.

*Excludes already discounted sets, clearance items, and eBooks.
Author Spotlight: Shannon Anderson
Shannon Anderson, who’s been featured on and Good Morning America, draws on her experience actively teaching growth mindset to empower kids. “Perseverance and determination have been the keys to my success before I even knew what a growth mindset was,” she says. “Once I started learning the brain research behind it and started implementing this teaching in my classroom, I realized how powerful it can be.”

Now she’s releasing two books on growth mindset, Y Is for Yet and Mindset Power. In Y Is for Yet, children ages four to eight learn how to adopt a growth mindset through the familiar structure of the ABCs. And Mindset Power provides positive, practical, you-can-do-it advice to help tweens of all abilities achieve their goals and build a growth mindset.

Just in time for back to school, Shannon is presenting a webinar on how to teach growth mindset in your classroom, whatever it looks like this fall. She also has articles on embracing mistakes in the classroom and overcoming the need to be a perfect teacher.

Connect with Shannon at or even invite her to your classroom for author visits or professional development sessions!
Tips & Tools from the Free Spirit Blog
Music can have a powerful effect on the brain, and so can one’s mindset. In this post, we’ve combined music and growth mindset in one amazing playlist. Read now.
School counselor Amanda C. Symmes offers trauma-sensitive suggestions for incorporating growth mindset in a way that weaves the concept, language, and lens into your teaching. Read now.
Educational grants available for your school or community:

The US Department of Education invites proposals to increase the capacity of state, regional, and local systems to improve retention of special education teachers or early intervention personnel working with infants, toddlers, children, and youth with disabilities. Expectations are to plan, implement, evaluate, scale-up, and sustain comprehensive retention plans using evidence-based policies and practices.

Eligible applicants are state educational agencies and organizations designated as Part C lead agencies for infant and toddler programs under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), working in conjunction with local educational agencies or providers of early intervention services. Competitive preference is provided to applications incorporating partnerships with a broad range of stakeholder groups such as personnel preparation programs at institutions of higher education, parent training and information centers, other community-based organizations, and the business community. Competitive preference is also provided to applications contributing cash or in-kind matching support. Applications must be submitted online.

Eligibility: Public, Other (including homeschool, 501(c)(3) organizations)
Prize: $700,000–$750,000 for the first year, with potential for three years of funding
Application Deadline: August 17, 2020

The Foundation for Rural Service provides a variety of programs ranging from youth-based initiatives and educational materials to consumer awareness and rural economic development. The foundation aims to improve educational achievement in rural communities across the country with projects that will have a long-lasting effect on the community. Grants are concentrated in four major areas: business and economic development, community development, education, and telecommunications.

Educational grants support technology in the classroom (such as computers and smart boards), curriculum development, extracurricular activities, and distance-learning programs. The foundation recently supported funding for Chromebooks for elementary school students, virtual reality equipment for high school students, and classroom computers for underserved students. Priority is given to projects that will be fully funded by the grant maximum, or those that have 75 percent of the project costs funded.

Eligibility: Public, Private, Charter, Other (including homeschool, 501(c)(3) organizations)
Prize: $250–$5,000
Application Deadline: September 15, annually
Recent Review

“This is the kind of book that opens your heart a little wider to help you love just a little bit more. Share it with every kid you know.”Jill Twiss, author of A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo and senior writer at Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

“Unreservedly recommended.”—Midwest Book Review
Free Download
Encourage kids to use this month’s free download, the “ESP Form” from Boost Emotional Intelligence in Students by Maurice J. Elias, Ph.D., and Steven E. Tobias, Psy.D., whenever they’re faced a difficult problem or important decision. Standing for “evaluate, select, and proceed,” ESP helps students with the problem-solving and decision-making process.

Find Free Spirit
Upcoming Events 

August 20: Free webinar presented by Shannon Anderson, M.Ed.: “Ready, Set, Grow! How to Teach Growth Mindset in Grades K–8

September 10: Free webinar presented by Richard M. Cash, Ed.D.: “Help Students Develop Critical Thinking Online and in the Classroom
View our webinar archive at
“We are not what other people say we are. We are who we know ourselves to be.”
—Laverne Cox