Growth vs. Fixed Mindset

No Mom or Teacher Guilt Allowed!

Last Tuesday I got to talk to a group of moms about mindset. The key word is YET!  Students (kids) either have a skill mastered or not yet.  The always have the opportunity of getting it.  It might take time, effort or elbow grease, but nothing is final.  Looking at mistakes to figure out when it turned into a mistake so you can fix it is a growth mindset.  A fixed mindset is the thinking of can do or cannot.   I talk to teachers all the time about the importance of the word yet, and I finally got the opportunity to share this message with moms.  It is important for our kids to have a growth mindset.  Feedback is not negative.  Praise should not be tied to intelligence.   We grow.  We learn.  We change!

If teachers feel guilt for helping perpetuate the feeling of I’m smart or I’m dumb, magnify that by 100 for the guilt moms feel! I saw it in their faces.  I shared my failings as a mom in this area- and I know better!

This happened on Thursday.  Two days after I talked about giving growth praise.  I saw her original text, and resisted the urge to praise her intelligence. I think I responded well!  Then the hammer fell.  She didn’t take a test- the teacher just gave her a 100 as a completion grade.  Bummer!  Still I’m glad she did the homework and finished her notes.  She stayed home from basketball practice to finish.  I’m proud of her!

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Trying out growth mindset praise!


Here is the video we watched at the mom’s meeting.

See you soon,




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Posted in Professional Development.