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Growth Mindset

The Priory City of Lincoln we encourage students to develop a growth mindset for learning. If you have a growth mindset, you believe that with work, practice, and perseverance, you can improve – whether it’s your academic performance, or any other skill. (Those with the opposite, a fixed mindset, believe that our intelligence and talents are predisposed, and either you were born with it or not.)

A growth mindset thinking can result in a love for learning and self-improvement. It leads to a belief that you can control the outcomes in your life with effort and practice and learn from mistakes and failures. It allows individuals to be self- motivated and emotionally resilient.

How you can help develop a growth mindset at home:

Praise carefully – not for intelligence but for effort

Encourage deliberate practice and targeted effort

Encourage high challenge tasks to grow those brain cells!

Discuss errors and mistakes and help your children to see them as opportunities to learn and improve

Encourage family discussions about mindset and which mindset they (and you?) are choosing to use

Teach children to talk back to their ‘fixed mindset’ internal voice with a ‘growth mindset’ internal voice

Start now by redefining the meaning of a few ordinary words…

Intelligence Praise

Try not to say…

  • You’re so clever at…
  • You’re so intelligent at...
  • You’re lucky you’re gifted at …
  • Don’t worry if you didn’t get a great result, did you get a better score than X child?
  • Ah…you made a mistake, how many times have we told you to get it right first time?

Effort Praise

Try to say…

  • I’ve noticed the effort you’re putting into…
  • All of your hard work and practice is resulting in progress in….
  • I’m proud of how committed you have been to learning…
  • How do you feel about not getting the result you wanted first time? Are you clear on what you need to do to improve your learning next time? You made a mistake, that’s ok, we all make mistakes when we’re learning something new. What can you learn from it, to improve next time?