Thursday, July 17, 2014

Promoting a Growth Mindset



I was introduced to the growth mindset research about a year ago through a Stanford course I took. The research is amazing and changed how I work with my students. If you are not familiar with the growth mindset vs. the fixed mindset attitudes, I encourage you to really look into them. In a nutshell, research coming out of Stanford shows that people either have a fixed or growth mindset. A fixed mindset says one believes intelligence is fixed and nonmalleable. On the contrary, those with a growth mindset believe that intelligence can grow and change. The most interesting aspect of this, however, is that those with a fixed mindset have been shown to give up quicker, or not attempt challenging work at all because they do not believe intelligence can change. Those with a growth mindset push themselves more and, consequently, accomplish more because they believe intelligence can change. This has great implications for us educators, especially since there are things we can do to help students develop a growth mindset. To begin, we should embrace challenges and encourage effort. ¨Yes, that was difficult but you kept working at it. Good job!¨ Ensuring that we have conversations with our students about how struggle is healthy and means we are growing and learning will help students develop a growth mindset. In my own classroom last year, we really tackled the idea that mistakes were an important building block in our learning. I always shared my mistakes and as such students started sharing their own mistakes. No longer were they afraid of exposing their mistakes, they actually took every opportunity to share those mistakes. I am enclosing some links that might better help explain the growth mindset. 

 Short explanation:

 A longer explanation

Pinterest board about teaching grit and a growth mindset

Mindsetonline

Do you have additional resources on growth mindset? Please share them. 

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