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Growth vs. Fixed Mindset

Posted on Aug. 30, 2017

We’ve tried in various ways to explain what we mean by a Growth Mindset and its connection to the Habits of Mind we teach our students. A recent blog post by Growth Mindset Trainer James Anderson really boils it down in a way we think will be meaningful for you. The basic gist? A Growth Mindset “is not growth itself. It’s an invitation to grow. It’s an understanding that growth is possible.” And this, he says, has an enormous impact on our motivations and actions.

  • “For the learner with a Fixed Mindset, the Habits of Mind describe what intelligent people have. They also identify what other people don’t (and won’t) have.”
  • “For the learner with a Growth Mindset, the Habits of Mind describe and define what they need to develop in order to become more intelligent.”

The habits are ways to teach students to become more intelligent, but they only work if they are approached from a Growth Mindset. Students’ behaviors change when they understand that they have the capacity to become more intelligent.


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