Growth Mindset Resources (for Teachers and Parents)

  • How often have you said: "I'm not good at math," or "I'm not an artist," or "I can't do sports"?  

    Stanford psychology professor Carol Dweck coined the terms fixed mindset and growth mindset to describe the way that people think about they way they learn.  People with fixed mindsets believe intelligence is fixed and it cannot be grown or developed with deliberate practice and work.  People with growth mindsets believe that intelligence can be changed and developed.  In Dweck's research, she found that over 20 years of research indicateds that "the view you adopt for yourself profoundly affects teh way you lead your life. It can determine whether you become the person you want to be and whether you accomplish the things you value" (Dweck, 2006, 6). 

    If you have a fixed mindset, you feel anxious often, believing that you need to prove yourself again and again.  "If you have only a certian amount of intelligence, a certain personality, and a certain moral character - well, then you'd better prove that you have a healthy dose of them. It simply wouldn't do to look or feel deficient in these most basic characteristics" (Dweck, 2006, 6).  This mindset often leads people to quit when a situation becomes too hard, or just not try new things for fear of failure. 

    If you have a growth mindset, you see your current situation as temporary and changeable based on your effort and determination.  "Although people pmay differe in every which way - in their initial talents adn aptitudes, interests, or temperaments - everyone can change and grow through application and experience... This is the mindset that allows people to thrive during some of the most challenging times in their lives" (Dweck, 2006, 7).

    At Cornwall School, we want all students to develop a growth mindset, so they are resilient when they are here as students and when they leave.  We want them to challenge themselves to make the world a better place, to live happier lives, to learn more and do more.

    Below you will find resources on developing a growth mindset to help your children cultivate both grit in the face of adversity and a growth mindset.  You can also stop by the office and borrow Dweck's book Mindset.

Changing our mindset
KIndergarteners are victorious!