Developing a Growth Mindset

How many of you have ever had a child that has troubles making mistakes? When a mistake is made the student has a hard time dealing with the consequences. What about that child that takes a long time to complete an assignment because each letter, word, or number has to be written perfectly?  Yes . . .  you know what I’m talking about, and I’m sure you had a few names come to mind.

 

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One of the best life skill lessons that we can teach our children in the classroom and at home focuses on “Developing a Growth Mindset”.

 

I came across this book,  The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes, by Mark Pett and Gary Rubinstein. This is a perfect book to help children begin to understand that mistakes are acceptable.

I love how this book not only details how Beatrice is so perfect, but how she had a hard time overcoming a mistake.  This is very typical of children who have a hard time with mistakes.  The mistake is like a dark cloud that impacts the entire day.  Throughout the story, Beatrice learns how to overcome this challenge and sees mistakes as a stop for learning.

 

When I was looking for more lessons to engage students in learning, I turned to this book, The Growth Mindset Coach.  It has a year long plan of ideas that can be used in the classroom and at home to support children on developing a growth mindset.

This book starts in August with a reflective session, then in September the text provides a guideline of ideas that can be easily implemented in the classroom through family meetings (aka class meetings), throughout the day as “opportunity arises” lessons, or even when the child has had a moment to calm down, reflect, and engage in a learning conversation about the incident.  I use this book alongside my district’s Positive Action SEL program.

 

Use Children’s Lit for Learning

Check out these children’s books to use as additional resources for teaching a growth mindset.  I love having a variety of titles to choose from when teaching skills, strategies, and concepts.  Each of these books focus on developing that growth mindset and can be used anytime throughout the year.

 

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Annette Durbin

Annette has been an educator for 29 years working in the PK-6 elementary classroom, English learner instructional specialist, district leadership, university professor, as well as a mentor for teachers nationwide. A National Board Certificated Teacher, Annette focuses her research on accelerating learning and advancing achievement, personalizing instruction, technology, and leadership in the education field.

This Post Has 36 Comments

  1. marisa

    Great recommendations and I LOVE the Girl Who Never Made Mistakes. We read it often throughout the year in my class. I always begin the year w/a discussion that mistakes mean learning. I teach 2nd grade & I point blank ask them…”If I teach you something and you already know it, and you go and do it perfectly the first time, then did you LEARN anything?” They realize how rediculous that sounds and chant “NO!” So, if I explain something and you go and do it WRONG and make a mistake and bring it back to me and we go over it, THEN did you learn something?! “YES!!” So, “Go make some mistakes please! So that I can do my job and TEACH you something.” hahaha. So from DAY 1–we get excited when someone makes a mistake in my class.

    1. Annette Durbin

      LOVE THIS!!!! Learning can’t happen UNLESS we make mistakes!!! I love that you tell them “Go make some mistakes, so I can do my job!” Thanks for sharing how you use this book for learning!

  2. jen

    I’ve been reading about growth mindset. It’s fascinating.

    1. Annette Durbin

      Yes, it is really a different perspective people can grow with.

  3. Tricia Snow

    I love it! A growth mindset! Sending this to my daughter!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Thanks for sharing this with your daughter!!! Spread the word. 🙂

  4. Leigh Ann Newman

    These are great book suggestions to aid in teaching. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Stephanie Dee

    Helping kids understand that mistakes are the way we learn can be challenging, especially if they live in an environment where mistakes aren’t tolerated and they are belittled for making them. I think parents could learn from these resources as well as teachers, so they understand that mistakes are natural and no one, not even them, is perfect. Great list of resources we can all use. Thanks!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Yes, perfection is not the first step. Learning takes time and patience.

  6. Robin Frields

    Sounds like a wonderful childrens book. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  7. Angela

    Great book for kids. Though I think I work with some adults that need that growth mindset reminder – mistakes happen and learn from them.

  8. Haley Kelley

    With a going to be 1st grader these articles are amazing for me! Thanks for sharing!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Haley, I’m glad you see the value. I certainly wish these books were around when my kiddos were littles. So much can be learned from books.

  9. Beth

    Those are great books with great lessons. Thanks!

    1. Annette Durbin

      I think literally any book I’ve picked up has a hidden lesson. It’s fun to read and find out.

  10. Holly Bird

    You always have such great advice for teaching and sharing to help with the mindset in children! Thank you I love your suggestions and always check them out for my autistic grandson!!

    1. Annette Durbin

      Thank you, Holly!! The best thing is all kiddos can learn and appreciate these books and lessons.

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