Beyond the Growth Mindset

Let me start off saying that this is part rant, part questioning to the greater audience.

I’ve been thinking and talking and reflecting on the growth mindset a lot lately. In the New teacher group I’m a part of as a mentor we discussed Growth Mindset, our familiarity with it, and how we might use it in our classrooms. At our Department meeting yesterday, we touched on it. I’ve been reading The Growth Mindset Coach. And I’ve explicitly taught the Growth Mindset to my kids using these activities (please do not download the “craftivity” – I bought that from here and the Famous Failures too!). We also do a Thursday Growth Mindset Warm up and I continue to use language with kids to foster this belief in practice, Growth, and failing forward.


I think it’s beyond that. That it’s deeper than that. The more I think about it and talk and think and talk….

it’s beyond just practice and fostering that in kids. It’s beyond me enthusiastically saying “yet” when kids say things like “I can’t draw”.

It’s my unequivocal belief that ALL KIDS CAN ACHIEVE AND GROW IN ALL AREAS. I believe that in my core of my being. That anyone can do anything they set their mind to – with practice, research, positive support, and diligence. And maybe I’m cocky, maybe I’m egotistical… but I think I am able to help students believe that themselves. Shouldn’t all teachers believe that about kids? AND about themselves?

That we really do have that power.. to change’ life for the better?

This isn’t about me saving kids lives or any of that white savior garbage… this is about my unending belief that anyone can do anything.

Digging into John Hattie’s research about the influences on teaching and seeing that a teacher’s belief in kids is one of the top factors for achievement solidifies my belief even further. Shouldn’t all teachers believe in ALL kids? And how do we show this belief?

Screen Shot 2017-10-25 at 4.57.14 AM

Does not believing in all kids, or not fully embracing the growth mindset, does that make it easier to not do the work for all kids? Does it make it easier to pass the blame off to someone else or to lack of stuff (resources, support, PD, etc)?

How do we continuously demonstrate this notion that all people can grow and learn and get better? Not just students, but teachers. How could we support that in better ways?

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