Growth mindset isn’t just for students

Growth mindset strategies can be effective classroom techniques. After all, learning is hard work, and growth mindset is based on the idea that hard work produces results.

Teachers who use growth mindset with students often focus on:

  • Recognizing a willingness to go after challenges and stick with them until solved
  • Pointing out how strategy improved achievement
  • Making concepts relevant not only in class but also beyond place and time
  • Collecting and curating examples of their success
  • Encouraging plenty of reflection

The result is that students achieve more because they learn that perseverance works, and they have previous successes that prove it.

Unlike a fixed mindset in which learning is static, growth mindset is dynamic. The potential for achievement in unlimited because students believe it is so.

Growth mindset for grown-ups

Some people practice growth mindset without even realizing it.

Maybe you’ve noticed that trying to put gas in your car on the way to work makes you feel more harried by the time you arrive. It may even make you late to class. As a result, you decide to fill up you tank on the way home from school. That way, you avoid the morning rush.

There’s no reason to continue doing what you’ve always done. Changing your habit changed the outcome. That’s growth mindset.

Teachers and staff performance can be equally affected by growth mindset ideas. Here are a few ways to practice growth mindset in your life:

  • Focus on ways to persevere in challenging times. If you have a student needing intensive support in the classroom, how can you get the support of others to help you?
  • Recognize that teaching skill comes from hard work and practice. As gifted as some teachers may appear, they developed that characteristic through hard work and perseverance. You can, too.
  • Needing improvement in any area is not a failure. If your administrator points out that you need improvement, it’s an opportunity for practice.
  • Give and accept constructive criticism. Use the information for making positive changes.
  • Rely less on external approval. The only one you need to please is yourself. In growth mindset, learning is its own reward.
  • Accept your weaknesses. They are part of who you are, but they’ve don’t have to define you.
  • Reflect frequently on your progress. By growth mindset is a fluid process, you need time to reflect on where you’ve been in your journey, where you’re headed next, and what strategies are mostly likely going to benefit you.

How schools can help promote growth mindset

Schools are the epicenter of learning experiences for students and teachers alike . There’s no reason that teachers and staff should be left out of growth and opportunity.

Administrators can help to encourage growth mindset by:

  • Commending teachers for trying innovative strategies in their classrooms.
  • Praising teachers for effort rather than traits. Instead of saying, “Your classroom likes nice,” tell the teacher, “I see you’ve put a lot of thought into the placement of your classroom displays.”
  • Advocating for reflective practices. Teachers and staff must have time to reflect on formative performance evaluations, so they can identify areas for further practice.

Growth mindset is a concept that can change how you perceive your work and how effective you will be in accomplishing it.

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