Last night my 10 year old was struggling with his homework. “I cannot do it, I will never be able to do it” was his cry.
On the other hand, a few months ago my 16 year old was joining a music band of older, more experienced players. I felt nervous for her and could not imagine doing what she was doing. When I asked her about it she replied “I love playing with them, I learn so much from watching them play and I think ‘one day I will be that good!’”
The school has been learning about what it means to have a ‘Growth Mindset’. A growth mindset looks at a problem as a challenge, as something that is exciting to solve, as something they may not be able to do … YET. That word ‘yet’ is very important. It changes the way a problem is seen. It is a magic word to add to the end of sentences.
So, to my 10 year old I say “you may find it hard, and you cannot do it…yet. Keep working and asking for help and it will come.”
A growth mindset does not always come easily to me, it is something I have to work at. But, now that I know what it is and the difference it makes to learning and life, it is something that I want to teach to both my own kids and those around me. A growth mindset:
*helps us to see challenges as good things
*it allows us to develop grit and determination
*it helps us to bounce back from set-backs and have another go
*it allows us to see possibilities
*it takes away the fear of failure and sees failure as a part of life and growth.
What great things to be able to help our kids learn. I am working at my growth mindset, I am just not always there …YET!