The Importance of a Growth Mindset

Establishing a growth mindset in classrooms.

Monique Fogg

What Is A Growth Mindset

The idea of a growth mindset comes from the professor Carol Dweck, A growth mindset is when a person focuses more on doing the education rather than how they do in education. A growth mindset student would be more open to facing challenges in learning, rather than a fixed mindset student who would shy away from a challenge.
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Students with a Growth Mindset vs. A fixed Mindset

Professor Carol Dweck decided to test her theory of growth mindset on students around the age of ten. Carol told the kids that they would be doing a challenge. Some of the students when they were told this were ecstatic and even said "I love a good challenge". Other students did not have the same response they were upset and thought that this was catastrophic. The kids who were more opened to the challenge had a growth mindset the ones who weren't had a fixed mindset.

How are these mindsets established?

Fixed Mindsets

There are several students who are on honor rolls each year but they most likely have different mindsets. Most of those kids could have a growth mindset and others would have a fixed. They way they were raised and the people who they are around could have affected their mindsets. The students who have a fixed mindset believe that they have to be born with certain skills in order to succeed at it. What they don't know is that there is not any relation between students abilities or intelligence and the development of mastery-oriented qualities. Students who have fixed mindsets think they can't change their mindsets when in fact they can.
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Growth Mindsets

Students who have a growth mindset are mastery-oriented. They don't worry if they have the skills they focus more on the effort and strategies. When students with a growth mindset have a challenge in front of them they will try extremely hard to succeed at it. Students with a growth mindset learn from their failures and others success. Those things inspire them to try harder and to grow, with that they can go far and reach their fullest potential.
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Helping Students Develop a Growth Mindsets

Growth Mindsets in the Classroom

Teachers jobs involve helping students reach their full potential. The teachers might be trying to help students reach their full potential but what they don't know is that they can be influencing the students to have a fixed mindset rather than a growth one. In Chicago there is a high school that requires the students so pass a certain amount of courses, when they don't pass all of those courses the students get the grade Not Yet. By saying Not Yet rather than failing the students you give them a sense of hope. When telling a student that they are failing they diminish all the hope that was given to them, when telling them Not Yet you give them hope for the future that they will get this eventually. In our society today students believe that they are their test scores, they are defined by their grades.

What can teachers do now to help their students? They can give them the power of hope, the power of yet. Students can turn around their mindsets by just saying the word yet. A fixed mindset sentence could be changed, such as "I don't understand this!" can be changed to "I don't understand this yet". At school we should want our students to reach for the moon land upon the stars but keep working for the moon, rather than them not leaving the base.

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Web Citations


Hopkins, Gary. "How Can Teachers Develop Students Motivations -- and Success." Education World. 2000. Web. 21 Jan. 2016.



The Power Of Believing That You Can Improve. Perf. Carol Dweck. The Power Of Believing That You Can Improve. Nov. 2014. Web. 21 Jan. 2016.