Friday, April 13, 2012

Sharing the Concept of Mindset with Students

Two weeks ago, I wrote a post about attending a Common Core Conference and hearing about the book, Mindset by Carol Dweck. In that post,  I reviewed how Mindset impacted me as a person and as an educator.  After reading the book, I became intrigued by the Mindset concept and began reading articles online about it, tweeting about it, and joining the #educoach chat recently about it. I decided to share the concept of a Growth Mindset and Fixed Mindset with my students.  I discovered this chart in a post about Mindset on the Thoughtful Learning Blog to use as a helpful visual while sharing the two different mindsets.  
Yesterday during morning meeting, I had the chart up on the Smartboard while I gave real life examples of students who have a fixed mindset and students with a growth mindset.  Then I asked the students to think about which mindset they have as learners and put a thumb up when they could explain their reflective thinking. Students turned and talked to share their reflections with their partner.  Many of my students shared that they considered themselves to be in the middle and found that they have some growth mindset traits while also having some fixed mindset traits.  I was extremely impressed by how mature, honest, and high level their conversations were as they reflected upon themselves as learners.  Some were brutally honest and admitted that they completely have a fixed mindset and gave specific examples to support their reflection.  I asked students to think of a plan to help them work towards turning one or more of their fixed mindset traits into a growth mindset trait.  They turned and talked with their partner to help one another with their plans and goals. 

After their conversations, I had students go off to write about their current mindset and describe their goal and plan of action to achieve their goal.  Here are some examples of their written reflections that I collected:
I will continue to use the words “Growth Mindset” and “Fixed Mindset” in our daily conversations, lessons, and reflections.  I will also hand back their mindset reflections in about a month so they can continue to reflect on the growth they made working towards their mindset goals. 

I’d love to hear your thoughts about sharing the Mindset concept with students/colleagues and how you are helping students/colleagues work towards having a growth mindset rather than a fixed mindset as a learner and as an individual.   
Happy Learning! :)


  1. thanks for sharing!

  2. I'm so glad to see you talk about growth mindset and fixed mindset. I'm also an educator, school psychologist, and reading Dweck's book changed how I parent and how I interact with the students I work with. I'm currently thinking about a bulletin board/poster I can put together that would help students, parents, colleagues reflect on what kind of mindset they use throughout the day. Any suggestions?