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A New Way of Being

kate

It was Friday afternoon. Kindergarten in January: need I say more? I was tired and my students were wired.

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The Power of Mistakes: Creating a Risk-Tolerant Culture at Home and School

The Power of Mistakes: Creating a Risk-Tolerant Culture at Home and School

Educators and parents want their kids to seek challenges and persist through difficulty—but so often, they don't. It's all too familiar: John always takes the easy way out; Angel gives up at the first sign of difficulty; Anna falls apart when she gets a disappointing grade.

Of course, struggling students are especially vulnerable to helplessness and fear of failure.  But even high-performing kids fall prey to test anxiety, or avoid that one subject that fills them with dread. Why does this happen? And what can we do about it?

The sad truth is that many students feel very vulnerable in school. For lots of kids, school is above all a place where they are tested and judged—often publicly—and where they feel inadequate. Sometimes, this vulnerability extends to the home, especially if parents place a very high value on perfect performance or are intolerant of failure. It's not what we intend, but it's what they experience.

The good news is that it's within our power to change this, if we know the keys to creating a risk-tolerant home and classroom culture.

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Recent Comments
Ryan Rice
This article does a great job of giving a succinct overview of what a growth mindset is and how to promote it. As with many elemen... Read More
Monday, 22 September 2014 03:04
Laura Tucker
Love the fun with sharing mistakes with each other in class. Everyone's given permission to admit mistakes and talk about what the... Read More
Monday, 03 November 2014 02:27
Eduardo Briceño
Agreed, a great practice! To build on it: a recent blog post by David Dockterman inspires a tweak: Facilitate a "me to we" attit... Read More
Tuesday, 21 April 2015 16:08
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The Power of Mindset: A Student Perspective

The Power of Mindset: A Student Perspective

Does what you think about your ability really matter?  If you had asked me that question a few years ago, my response would have been, “No, not really.”  But over the past two years, I've changed from the negative, stressed-out, perfectionist teenage girl I was my freshman year to the joyful person I am today. Now, my response is much different.  

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Growth Mindset: Clearing up Some Common Confusions

Growth Mindset: Clearing up Some Common Confusions

This article was first published by KQED Mindshift on November 16, 2015

A growth mindset is the understanding that personal qualities and abilities can change. It leads people to take on challenges, persevere in the face of setbacks, and become more effective learners. As more and more people learn about the growth mindset, which was first discovered by Stanford Professor Carol Dweck, we sometimes observe some confusions about it. Recently some critiques have emerged. Of course we invite critical analysis and feedback, as it helps all of us learn and improve, but some of the recent commentary seems to point to misunderstandings of growth mindset research and practice. This article summarizes some common confusions and offers some reflections.

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Eduardo Briceño
Thanks. I'm glad it helps clarify!
Friday, 18 December 2015 10:43
Eduardo Briceño
Nice example. We can learn from the feedback from editors, and it does take everyone a lot of submissions and revisions to publis... Read More
Friday, 18 December 2015 10:42
Eduardo Briceño
Hi Robert. Thanks for your reflection and question. Self-efficacy and growth mindset are very related but different. Self-effic... Read More
Friday, 18 December 2015 08:25
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The Most Spectacular Failure

The Most Spectacular Failure

My team and I worked tirelessly for three days to create an online middle school math lesson that would engage kids and excite them about math. At the end of three days, our lesson would be judged by real live students against lessons created by other teams. When it came time to present our lesson to the kids, we were nervous but excited. We had worked well as a team, really bonded over the past three days, and were proud of what we had created. Ten teams presented their ideas, and they were all fantastic! I felt gratified to work with people who put so much effort into writing creative and engaging online lessons. At the awards ceremony, we were sad to see we hadn't won first place, but still proud of our efforts. We knew we had a lesson that would engage kids in math, and felt we had put our best ideas to good use. Until the next, "surprise" award was announced. You can imagine our shock, dismay, and embarrassment when we heard our group called as winners of "The Worst Idea" award, and were then called to stand in front of our colleagues and accept the award. What an epic failure! How does one recover from such a humiliating setback?

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Eduardo Briceño
Thank you Janna for sharing your challenges, mistakes, failures, and reflections. Thank you for being a role model learner and ins... Read More
Monday, 02 February 2015 01:09
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