Fantastic Failures: True Stories of People Who Changed the World by Falling Down First

Fantastic Failures

J. K. Rowling, Albert Einstein, Steven Spielberg—even the most well-known people have struggled to succeed. Fantastic Failures offers readers 35 stories of flops that turned into triumphs.

Children need a book that reiterates the benefits of learning by making your own mistakes

According to the Journal of Psychologists and Counsellors in Schools, socially prescribed perfectionism can lead to depressive disorders in children as young as 10.

In a culture that is constantly pushing for perfectionism, children need a book that reiterates the benefits of learning by making your own mistakes. Discovering the imperfections of otherwise perfect people could help relieve your students' stress and anxiety and lead them to be better students.


Fantastic Failures True Stories of People Who Changed the World by Falling Down First by Luke Reynolds

Fantastic Failures: True Stories of People Who Changed the World by Falling Down First by Luke Reynolds

There is a lot of pressure in today’s society for kids to succeed, but failing is a part of learning how to be a successful person. In his teaching career, Luke Reynolds saw the stress and anxiety his students suffered over grades, fitting in, and getting things right the first time.

Fantastic Failures was created for these students to learn that their mistakes and failures do not define their whole lives but help them grow into their potential. Kids will love learning about some of the well-known people who failed before succeeding and will come to understand that failure is a large component of success.

With stories from people like J. K. Rowling, Albert Einstein, Rosa Parks, Abraham Lincoln, Vincent Van Gogh, Julia Child, Steven Spielberg, and Betsy Johnson, each profile just proves that the greatest mistakes and flops can turn into something amazing.

Intermixed throughout the fun profiles, Reynolds spotlights great inventors and scientists who discovered and created some of the most important medicines, devices, and concepts of all time, including lifesaving vaccines and medicines that were stumbled upon by mistake. Each profile is followed up with advice on how to come back from your own flops and move forward to succeed.


Common Core and STEAM

Fantastic Failures meets the common core English language arts/literature in history/social studies standards for upper elementary/lower middle school. It is also a great tool to any teacher's STEAM lesson approach, helping to urge dialogue and critical thinking around application, creation, and ingenuity.

A strong future economy requires a new generation of workers that understands the importance of the critical process of creativity, and not fearing failures, flops, and mistakes. There is a great importance to teach kids to look beyond these limitations as part of engaging creativity. This book opens kids' minds to the wonder, critique, inquiry, and innovation that is available to them.

"An upbeat, reassuring showcase of notable, successful people who refused to let adversities and setbacks stand in their way.” —Kirkus Reviews

"This would be a great family or class read to engage in conversations about growth mindset, persistence, and the value of failure. Definitely recommend this book!” —Lena Marie Rockwood, educator

“This book could be an excellent starting point for research projects. I love that the author provides readable source notes, primary documents (images, quotes), and a questionnaire at the back. Great resource for any classroom.” —Samantha Leane, educator

Author Luke Reynolds

Meet the author: Luke Reynolds

Luke Reynolds is a passionate believer in the power of stories to transform lives—especially stories that help us understand that we all fail and flounder sometimes. Luke has been a public school English teacher at both the secondary and middle school levels, and he currently is an assistant professor of education at Endicott College. He completed his PhD at Boston College and focuses on teaching, writing, and reading as three crucial paths toward compassion, kindness, and connection.

Other books by Luke include the nonfiction books Surviving Middle School and A Call to Creativity, the novel The Looney Experiment, and the picture books If My Love Were a Fire Truck and Bedtime Blastoff!

Luke and his wife, Jennifer, have three sons and live in Maine, where they endeavor to conduct as many family dance parties as possible in their living room.