Understanding Growth Mindset
- Developing a Growth Mindset: Watch Carol Dweck speak about the power of yet versus the tyranny of now and her research on growth mindset. (Stanford Alumni, 2014)
- Stanford University’s Carol Dweck on the Growth Mindset and Education: Read an interview transcript for an introduction to Carol S. Dweck’s work and thinking, including her research into mindsets and the concept of "fixed mindset" versus "growth mindset." (OneDublin.org, 2012)
- Recognizing and Overcoming False Growth Mindset: Clarify some common misconceptions about growth mindset. "Growth Mindset: Clearing Up Some Common Confusions" from KQED's MindShift is another good read. (Edutopia, 2016)
- Carol Dweck Talks Growth Mindset: Understand how having high expectations of students and providing effective support can be a winning combination. (Edutopia, 2014)
- 5-Minute Film Festival: 5 Videos to Explore Growth Mindset: Watch this carefully curated playlist for an introduction to growth mindset; there's something here for every audience, including the excellent animation below. (Edutopia, 2016)
- Academic Tenacity: Mindsets and Skills that Promote Long-Term Learning: Read a report summarizing the research on non-academic factors like growth mindset, grit, and self-efficacy that allow students to work harder and smarter over time. (Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, 2014)
Strategies for Addressing Mindsets
- Harnessing the Power of Productive Struggle: Learn how to create opportunities for students to have productive experiences with struggle. (Edutopia, 2016)
- Encouraging Students to Persist Through Challenges: Watch a video from a second grade classroom, and notice the targeted strategies used by the teacher to normalize struggle within the learning process and encourage students to reflect on their thinking processes. (Teaching Channel, 2015)
- Growth Mindset: A Driving Philosophy, Not Just a Tool: Explore five growth-mindset practices that can help educators and schools pursue a growth orientation. (Edutopia, 2014)
- The Biggest Lie Students Tell Me (and How to Turn It Around): Try four strategies to help shape the discussion in response to a student who says, "I can’t do this." (Edutopia, 2013)
- Positive Brains are Smarter Brains: Discover how students can exert control over influences on their emotional outlook in order to take a more positive approach to learning. (Edutopia, 2015)
- The Mindset Kit: Take a free online course to learn more about learning mindsets and activities and strategies to help students develop them. (Stanford University's PERTS)
- Growing Your Mind: Share a video with students to help them understand how struggle can help grow the brain. (Khan Academy, 2014)
Growth Mindset Within Math
- How to Remove Obstacles to Learning Math: Discover what the research says about learning mindsets when it comes to math, and learn about several instructional shifts that may help. (KQED’s MindShift, 2015)
- The Common Experience of Math Trauma: Read a review of Jo Boaler’s book Mathematical Mindsets. (Annie Murphy Paul, 2015)
- Research Shows How Children Can Enjoy and Succeed in Math: Review ways to reduce math anxiety by teaching math as a learning subject rather than as a performance subject. (Stanford, 2015).
- Growth Mindset and the Common Core Math Standards: Discover how growth mindset aligns with the Common Core standards for math. (Edutopia, 2013)
- Growth Mindset and Math: In this short course (75 minutes) from Stanford’s PERTS, learn more about practices that promote growth mindset within the context of a math class. (PERTS’ Mindset Kit)
- Growth Mindset From YouCubed: Find resources to address beliefs about mathematics, including a free downloadable poster that you can post in the classroom: "Positive Norms to Encourage in Math Class." (YouCubed)
Giving Better Student Feedback
- Embracing Failure: Building a Growth Mindset Through the Arts: Learn how educators at New Mexico School for the Arts in Santa Fe, New Mexico teach students how to integrate critical feedback. (Edutopia, 2016)
- Nurturing Intrinsic Motivation and Growth Mindset in Writing: Review tips from a high school English instructor about how to conduct better conferences with students; take a look at specific examples of process praise and feedback that can encourage autonomy, purpose, and choice. (Edutopia, 2014)
- Praising the Process: Watch this video of a writing workshop from a first grade classroom to see how to use process praise to encourage a growth mindset. (Teaching Channel, 2015)
- Using Praise to Enhance Student Resilience and Learning Outcomes: Explore Do’s and Don’ts, FAQs, and other information about how to use feedback to alter student mindsets. (American Psychological Association)
- The Secret to Raising Smart Kids: Read an article authored by growth-mindset researcher Carol Dweck about research into growth mindset, and learn how to give valuable feedback by focusing on the specific process a child used to accomplish something; at the end of the article, there are several useful examples of effective praise. (Scientific American, 2015)
AN EASY ACTIVITY TO PROMOTE GROWTH MINDSET
I love to start the year with Peter H. Reynold's books like The Dot and Ish. Both books are great for teaching kids that it is okay to take risks and make mistakes. Those books also go very well with this growth mindset activity we worked on. Read on to find out how this activity worked out in my classroom.
I started this school year with an activity that I saw on Twitter. I wrote out these words on plain paper and then read each word to my students so they would know what each said. For each word I asked for a show of hands to see how many kids had an idea of what each word meant. The only ones that I didn't get every hand up for were persistence and dedication. So we talked about those words as a class and I shared what those words mean to me. I also gave a specific example for each of those words.
Then I spread each paper around the room with markers and asked students to go to each word and write or draw what the word means to them. I told them it had to be a silent activity so that their friends could really think about each word.
I have a fairly chatty class but you could hear a pin drop during this activity. Some of the ideas they came up with were just so great.
The most important part of the lesson came at the end when we shared all of their ideas. I asked them to tell me why they thought we were talking about this, why was this an important conversation.
Here is the answer I got from one student, "...because it's okay for us to make mistakes. If we don't make mistakes we can't learn from them. And in order to make mistakes we have to have courage to take risks sometimes, even if we are worried we might get it wrong. In order to take risks we have to put in some effort and persistence and we will eventually be successful".
Kids are so bright!
Give this activity a shot in your classroom.