Growth Mindset (2.0)
Just as the apps on your phone continue to grow and update to become better than their pervious versions, my ideas on Growth Mindset have changed since my original post (and I'm sure they will continue to grow and develop in the future). Just as with apps, I am not erasing my old ideas of what I know about having a growth mindset, I am simply improving what I already have and adding new learning and ideas to my original post.
Please Enjoy Growth Mindset 2.0 (this post) and share any new learnings and ideas you may have below!
Helping students to develop their growth mindsets is important to teach because it will help students to feel comfortable taking risks, trying something even if they may be wrong and listening & using feedback to enhance their learning.
I have recently been put to the test with my growth mindset through my Digital Leading and Learning masters program at Lamar University. When taking my classes, I have had encouraging professors that had high expectations, a motivating and enthusiastic attitude and continuous opportunities to improve learning. We were never “done” with an assignment and when we received feed forward to make our work better. There had been times in the course where I had felt overwhelmed with the amount and depth of work for my courses and was not sure where we were going with our lessons. I had to remind myself and refer back to Carol Dweck's Mindset book, if something is challenging, I am learning. In the end, I have realized how much I learned along the way and how I am excited to continue on my learning journey.
I hope to promote this excitement and growth mindset to my students just as my professors have done for me. One of the biggest ways I have learned to do this is by modeling for my students what a growth mindset is. Discussing when things get challenging and coaching students to dig deep and not to give up. Teaching students when they hear their fixed mindset, because they will, that they have a choice and they can change their thoughts to a positive growth mindset. Holding my students to high standards, giving feed forward and working together with my students to learn. I will also share my stories of how I have had to have a growth mindset when it comes to learning. We are all learning and just because we don’t know something doesn’t mean we cant learn it. It just means we haven’t learned it “yet” .
When teaching grit and growth mindset I will be honest with my students. We all aren’t perfect, we all make mistakes, we all can have a fixed mindset at times and lack some grit. But that is exactly when you need to practice those growth mindset skills and really use grit to continue learning and not give up! To dig deep, use your why and continue moving forward. When you struggle, you are growing and it takes grit to power though and continue your learning each and every day.
I’ve watched the Grit video (above) over and over again many times. I feel as though Angela is right. We don’t have an answer. There is no end or one right way to teach grit or a growth mindset. But we do know how important it is to teach these skills to our students. This is not just something that we have for a class, or one assignment. This is a mindset for our lives and futures. Modeling for our students, families and friends what a growth mindset looks like and having discussions on how we can promote this mindset with others is key. Everyone makes mistakes. Everyone gets knocked down. It’s how we handle these situations that determines if we have a growth mindset.
By changing the language in my classroom from “I cant” to “I cant yet” or from “I’m done” to “how can I make this better” I will be teaching students to change their mindsets about their learning. This will help students when getting feed forward as they will enjoy getting advice on how to improve their work and become better at what they are doing. The goal is to move students away from trying simply just to complete a task or get a grade and towards taking on challenging tasks that will help them to be self motivated to learn and grow.
Through my courses at Lamar, my mindset has been forever changed (.. and is still growing). I still have my fixed mindset moments but I am more aware of these moments and now know how to talk back to them. When I am having a difficult time and I need to dig deep, I listen to my professors who are SO passionate about what they teach, I listen to my classmates who are going through the same struggle and learning along side me, I watch videos (linked throughout this entire post and all over the internet) to remind myself what it means to have a growth mindset and grit and I think of my why. I use that why to help me to persevere and continue growing in my teaching profession, as a learner and in life. This is the mindset I hope to pass along to my students, family and friends. This is the mindset that will help me to continue my learning journey.
Original Growth Mindset Post
Looking for more resources?
Check out my Growth Mindset Page that I use with my students!