Golden Nugget 1

pedagogy, research and classrooms

Carole Dweck's Mindset

We've all heard the phrase 'it's hard to change a mindset', or considered the fixed and/or narrow attitudes of those whom we live with or work with. This book is great (and now available from the Professional Learning Library), the product of over 20 years' research by psychologist Carole Dweck, who explains how and why we and those around us can be optimistic, pessimistic, stuck in our ways, or adaptable to change. Dweck has found that we are either of a fixed mindset, or a growth mindset.

Using Dweck's work in the classroom

Fixed or Growth?

Dweck demonstrates that mindset unfolds in childhood and adulthood and drives every aspect of our lives, from work to sports, from relationships to parenting. She reveals how creative geniuses in all fields–music, literature, science, sports, business–apply the growth mindset to achieve results. Perhaps even more importantly, she shows us how we can change our mindset at any stage of life to achieve true success and fulfillment. She looks across a broad range of applications and helps parents, teachers, coaches, and executives see how they can promote the growth mindset.

It is clearly our work in the classroom which drives us. Think of the last student you spent a significant amount of time with trying to change their mindset - their fixed and negative view of themselves as 'useless', 'no good at Maths/English/Science/Art', 'always get into trouble', 'can't be bothered'. These students have already learnt messages about success and failure, and will be even now acting according to their mindset.

Carol Dweck: Mindset interview

Would you like to know more about Mindsets?

In September the Wednesday Professional Learning Programme ('The Wednesday Programme') will be offering all the opportunity to join a Teaching and Pedagogy book group to discuss the issues raised by new research and their application in the classroom. We aim to start small and to try to replicate the atmosphere of a real book group... hopefully not putting anyone off!