Mindset Movers

The Power To Change Mindsets

Imagine you’re sitting in your staff room. What are you and your colleagues more likely to discuss: your “high-achieving students” or your “students who are achieving highly”?

From a Mindset perspective, the difference is subtle but important.

The first phrase, “high-achieving students”, suggests that “high achieving” is a type or category of student. It is a group a student belongs to, or not. Categorising students as “being” high achieving is an example of a Fixed Mindset Mover.

The second phrase, “students who are achieving highly”, focuses on what students are doing. They are “achieving highly”. The amount a learner achieves depends on what they do, and other students are capable of achieving highly by changing their actions. This is an example of a Growth Mindset Mover.

"When achievement becomes about what you do, not who you are, the underlying message is an...

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Developing a Growth Mindset Culture In Your Organisation

Have you ever been the victim of a personality test? 

You know the type of test I’m talking about. Someone at your workplace gives you a survey asking you a bunch of questions. Then you get a nice, coloured chart that describes your strengths and tells you what type of role you’re suited to.

These tests certainly have their place in an organisation. But if they are not used appropriately, they can contribute to a Fixed Mindset culture in your business.

"The way an organisation frames personality tests can contribute to either a Fixed Mindset culture of “being” or a Growth Mindset culture of “becoming ."
Too often, personality tests are interpreted as a permanent reflection of who we are. They are used to categorise us as being a certain type of person who is suited to or cut out for a limited number of roles. This implies we are not a fit for other roles because we aren’t the right “type”. 

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Developing A Growth Mindset Culture In Your School

Have you ever been the victim of a personality test? 

You know the type of test I’m talking about. Someone at your school gives you a survey asking you a bunch of questions. Then you get a nice, coloured chart that describes your strengths and tells you what type of role you’re suited to.

These tests certainly have their place. But if they are not used appropriately, they can contribute to a Fixed Mindset culture in your school.

“You see, the way a school frames personality tests can contribute to either a Fixed Mindset culture of “being” or a Growth Mindset culture of “becoming.”

Too often, personality tests are interpreted as a permanent reflection of who we are. They are used to categorise us as being a certain type of person who is suited to or cut out for a limited number of roles. This implies we are not a fit for other roles because we aren’t the right “type”. 

Let’s take a moment to explore the...

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It’s not “just a mistake”: Introducing six different types of mistakes – Part 2

Last week, we explored three “below the bar” mistakes that contribute little to the learning process. This week, we look at three “above the bar” mistakes that provide useful information and contribute positively to the learning process. These are the mistakes we should encourage and celebrate in our classrooms.

 

Aha Moment Mistakes

Have you ever suddenly and unexpectedly learnt something new? Perhaps you accidentally pressed a button on your computer, and something unexpected but useful happened?

Or maybe you were cooking and unintentionally used the “wrong” ingredient, but it worked out great?

 

 

 

 

Sometimes, mistakes happen, and we suddenly have insights we never expected. Alexander Fleming’s discovery of penicillin is an example of an Aha Moment Mistake. Fleming wasn’t looking for penicillin. The mould that grew on the agar dish he was using to grow bacteria was a mistake. But when he noticed the mould...

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Turia Pitt: An Agile Learner in action

Turia Pitt is an Agile Learner. She has a Growth Mindset and knows how to take on challenges and overcome adversity.

Completing a double bachelor’s degree in Engineering (Mining) and Science at the University of New South Wales in 2010, Turia went on to successfully apply her learning as a mining engineer at a prestigious diamond mining company in Western Australia.

Not content with only pursuing academic and career goals, Turia excelled in many other areas of her life. She was a contestant in the Miss Earth Australia contest, a professional model, and a successful ultramarathon runner.

Tragically, on 2nd September 2011, while competing in a 100km ultramarathon in the Kimberley region of Western Australia, Turia was caught in a grass fire. She suffered burns to 65% of her body, including her face. Turia was placed in a medically-induced coma for six months, underwent more than 200 operations, had her left foot amputated, and lost all the fingers on her left hand and two on her...

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Turia Pitt: An Agile Learner in action

Turia Pitt is an Agile Learner. She has a Growth Mindset and knows how to take on challenges and overcome adversity.

Completing a double bachelor’s degree in Engineering (Mining) and Science at the University of New South Wales in 2010, Turia went on to successfully apply her learning as a mining engineer at a prestigious diamond mining company in Western Australia.

Not content with only pursuing academic and career goals, Turia excelled in many other areas of her life. She was a contestant in the Miss Earth Australia contest, a professional model, and a successful ultramarathon runner.

Tragically, on 2nd September 2011, while competing in a 100km ultramarathon in the Kimberley region of Western Australia, Turia was caught in a grass fire. She suffered burns to 65% of her body, including her face. Turia was placed in a medically-induced coma for six months, underwent more than 200 operations, had her left foot amputated, and lost all the fingers on her left hand and two on her...

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It’s not “just a mistake”: Introducing six different types of mistakes – Part 1

In education, and the community more broadly, there is a movement towards normalising mistakes. “It’s OK to make a mistake” has become the mantra. “Mistakes help me learn” is repeated in classrooms around the world. And, in some instances, mistakes have been encouraged and even rewarded.

But the problem is that not all mistakes are the same. Some mistakes contribute to the learning process, while others detract from it. There is a difference between mistakes that make you say, “Oh!”, and the ones that make you say, “Oh no!”

Over the next two weeks, I will introduce you to six different types of mistakes. We will explore mistakes that make you say, “Huh?”, mistakes that make you go, “Doh!”, mistakes that make you think, “Hmmm …” and more. We’ll develop a language of mistakes you can share with your students to help them understand the role of mistakes in learning and become better...

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Why Settle For Resilience?

I’m fortunate to work with many teachers around the world. Not only do I get to share my work with them; I get to learn about the goals they see as most important to their school.

Developing resilience is one of the most common goals I hear about. In fact, it is often the reason why teachers are drawn to my work with Growth Mindsets and Learning Agility.

But recently, I’ve been questioning resilience. By making “resilience” our goal, do we set the bar too low? Could we do better?

Let’s take a look at what resilience is and why schools are so interested in it.

What is resilience?

Dictionary.com defines resilience as: “The capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. The power or ability to return to original form.”

Toni Noble and Helen McGrath, authors of Bounce Back!, discuss resilience in terms of the “ability to cope or ‘bounce back’ after encountering negative events, difficult situations,...

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Why settle for resilience?

I’m fortunate to work with many organisations around the world. Not only do I get to share my work with them; I get to learn about the goals they see as most important to their organisation.

Developing resilience is one of the most common goals I hear about. In fact, it is often the reason why organisations are drawn to my work with Growth Mindsets and Learning Agility.

But recently, I’ve been questioning resilience. By making “resilience” our goal, do we set the bar too low? Could we do better?

Let’s take a look at what resilience is and why organisations are so interested in it.

What is resilience?

Dictionary.com defines resilience as: “The capacity to recover quickly from difficulties. The power or ability to return to original form.”

Toni Noble and Helen McGrath, authors of Bounce Back!, discuss resilience in terms of the “ability to cope or ‘bounce back’ after encountering...

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Why are we still talking Fixed vs Growth Mindsets?

In her landmark book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success, Carol Dweck introduced the concept of Fixed and Growth Mindsets to the world. She highlighted the influence our Mindset has over our behaviour, and she gave dozens of examples of how peoples’ Fixed or Growth Mindset impacted their lives.

But we must remember that Dweck was introducing her ideas. She gave examples designed to highlight the importance of Mindsets, and she made us sit up and take notice. But Mindsets don’t end with fixed and growth – there’s so much more depth and complexity behind Dweck’s ideas.

"In the real world, there aren’t two types of people. We don’t live in a world where some people have a Fixed Mindset, and others have a Growth Mindset."

In reality, our differences are much more subtle and complex. Our Mindset doesn’t fall into one of two categories; rather, it falls along a continuum between the extremes of fixed and growth.

The Growth Mindset...

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