Growth Mindset

Growth mindset refers to a learning theory developed by Dr Carol Dweck. It revolves around the belief that you can improve intelligence, ability and performance. The opposite, a fixed mindset, refers to the belief that a person’s talents are set in stone. Years of research have shown that mindset is malleable. This means that by helping students to develop a growth mindset, we can help them to learning more effective and efficient.

ADVANTAGES OF A GROWTH MINDSET

There is a lot of peer-reviewed research on the pros of encouraging a growth mindset in pupils. These include:

  • They will seek out better feedback and persist for longer
  • They cope better with transitions and develop better self-regulation
  • It reduces stress and aggression in pupils as well as increasing well-being and emotional functioning
  • It improves self-esteem and reduces helplessness

Growth mindset coaching has been shown to be most beneficial for disengaged pupils.

HOW TO DEVELOP A GROWTH MINDSET

There is no set way to develop a growth mindset in children.  Good starting points include:

Types of Praise – praising the process, their effort and individual development over the result. Encouraging children to ask for and act on feedback. Encouraging a sense of curiosity.

Level of Expectation – having high, challenging but realistic expectations of pupils' performance and communicating this to them. 

Positive Group Norms – creating a growth culture that values learning, education and development.

Helpful Self-Talk – Teaching children to manage how they talk to themselves and to do so in a positive and helpful way.

 

Below are some activities you can use when developing a growth mindset with your child: