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Do You Have A Growth Mindset?

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“Mistakes help me learn,” said Growth Mindset

Every year there is a new fad in technology, clothing, and conversational lingo in our society. Upcoming fads are also trendsetting in education too. In fact, “growth mindset,” cultivated by psychology professor, Carol Dweck, is the latest fascination teachers are gorging their minds to learn more about. As great as growth mindset is for educators, it’s even beneficial for parents and coaches.

What is growth mindset one may ask? Growth mindset is thinking of the brain as a muscle, and believing that it can grow with specific feedback and positive criticism. Think of it this way, when one goes to the gym to exercise after a hiatus, that person is more than likely sore the next day. If they are sore, their body is telling them that they need to continue to exercise to build their strength. Similarly, as educators, coaches, and parents, we want our children’s brains to communicate and think about how a pitfall in their academics and/or their extra-curricular activities can be a beautiful thing.

How can one promote growth mindset? Carol Dweck suggests praising the student’s process and strategies; giving validation to a child’s problem-solving method. She even suggests having an individual conversation, noting the child’s progress thus far in a certain area, and figuring out the next strategy that may be beneficial. Overall, Dweck emphasizes never giving up and making mistakes is normal because progress is still being made.

In conclusion, the next time your child, student, and/or athlete states, “This is too hard.” Have them develop the mentality, “This may take some time.” To find more information about growth mindset, review the following article: http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2015/11/23/teachers-parents-often-misuse-growth-mindset-research-carol-dweck-says