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$1,392 pledged of $5,000 goal
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All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

By Climb On!
$1,392 pledged of $5,000 goal
backers

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

About

The Struggle Book is a complete, out-of-the-box curriculum designed to teach storytelling and growth mindset skills in 2nd and 3rd grade classrooms.

Inside, you’ll find 25 student booklets and a teaching guide. The student booklets contain blank comic frames and a crash course on personal narrative. The activity starts by teaching students the basic story arc using a 3-part comic format.

Students then practice basic comic skills like speech bubbles, motion lines, and thought clouds. Students bring these tools together to draw comics about times they’ve struggled in the past.

Through share-out sessions, the students help each other identify what tools they used to overcome the problems they’ve faced.

Here is where our product really differs. We provide ways of assessing how much the kids have learned about growth mindset by practicing their skills in scenarios with our main character, Kai the Climber.

To practice their storytelling and writing skills, they take one of their comics and extend it into a written piece, including dialogue, inner thoughts, actions, and description that wasn’t included before.

Using comics, a format that kids already love, we are able to teach them the fundamentals of writing as well as help them develop a growth mindset.

The set comes with a teaching guide designed to be easy to use, so teachers don't have more workload for the weekend.

The Climb On! Struggle Book started as our capstone project in product design at Stanford University. Our team of three began with the shared goal of social impact through early education.  

With the Stanford-developed design thinking framework as our guide, we formed Climb On!, found our mission–integrating personal and academic growth–and developed our first product: the Struggle Book.

By going into classrooms and observing what was on the walls and how they taught their kids, we were able to see what mattered to teachers. We came to the insight that teachers are working with limited time in the classroom -- time that is being dedicated more and more to academics, and less to fostering personal growth. 

We brainstormed dozens of ideas that combined the two together. Then, we created lightweight prototypes -- some even made out of cardboard -- to test with classrooms in the Bay Area. We saw that personal narrative and comic drawing really stuck with the students, so we decided to iterate more on that idea. 

 After six weeks of rapid prototyping, testing, and tweaking with classrooms, we landed on the Struggle Book.

Growth mindset has been proven to be so important, especially for young minds. When kids see a problem, instead of saying “I can’t do this” says “I can’t do this yet” it gives them a whole new outlook on what is possible for them to accomplish and often time is a key indicator of future success.

Katie

I’m from Portland (the one in Oregon), home of superior hipsters and coffee. As an engineer, if you had asked me one year ago what products the world needs to make sure that the leaders of tomorrow are effective problem solvers, I would have pointed towards STEM education. I wouldn’t have ever guessed that I would be here, pouring hours into a curriculum about writing, comics, and resilience. But that’s what I love about the design process! We were able to explore users and needs to create something that not only has the potential for impact but is unlike anything else on the market.

Alex

I’m Alex. I’m originally from New York City, home of superior bagels and skyscrapers (our subways, not so much). I really enjoy working with children, and have worked as a camp counselor for both my high school and for Camp Kesem Stanford. The best part of the design process for me is meeting new groups of people, hearing their stories, and learning something new. I’m stoked for the opportunity to bring design and early education together with this product!

John

I’m John! I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, and as an elementary schooler, you could always find me drawing out comics and writing stories. In my free time, I still use that passion for creative writing to make movie scripts and edit videos. Last year I even had the opportunity to work writing cartoons. I have loved the process of designing this product because it has given me the opportunity to work with some extremely bright and talented kids and figure out how to teach them what I love to do.

Risks and challenges

The Struggle Book's biggest risks are unexpected printing and shipping delays. All of the artwork and digital materials are finished and ready to be ordered. The printers for all of the merchandise and supply companies are sourced and ready to receive the orders.

We'll be sure to keep backers updated on the project's progress and any expected delays.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    Cartoon with Kai + Thank You note

    We want to show our appreciation with a hand-drawn cartoon of you and our mascot Kai the Climber and a personalized thank you note.

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    Curriculum and Digital Booklets

    Get a laminated copy of the curriculum, as well as a digital version of the student booklet, ready for easy printing.

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    The Complete Struggle Book Curriciulum

    You’ll get the whole package! With this purchase, you'll get the curriculum guide, 25 student booklets, and our custom designed box.

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    A School Set

    Give a gift to an entire school: you'll receive 5 full sets of the Struggle Book.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Design Thinking Workshop

    If you’re within two hours of Stanford University, we’ll hand-deliver five Struggle Book kits and give your classroom a crash course on the design process!

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