Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

January 30, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

New Study Connects Growth Mindset & “Bouncing Back” From Mistakes

Kids should pay more attention to mistakes, study suggests is the headline of a Science Daily report on a new study.

The study finds, to no one’s surprised, that people with a growth mindset bounce back from mistakes more easily than those with a fixed mindset.

Here’s an excerpt:

Here’s more on what the researchers say:

Many parents and teachers shy away from addressing a child’s mistakes, telling them “It’s OK, you’ll get it the next time,” without giving them the opportunity to figure out what went wrong, Schroder said.

“Instead they could say: ‘Mistakes happen, so let’s try to pay attention to what went wrong and figure it out.'”

I’m adding this info to:

The Best Posts, Articles & Videos About Learning From Mistakes & Failures

The Best Resources On Helping Our Students Develop A “Growth Mindset”

 

January 27, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

A Look Back: “Opportunities & Dangers Of Big New Growth Mindset Study”

In February, this blog will be celebrating its ten-year anniversary! Leading up to it, I’m re-starting a series I tried to do in the past called “A Look Back.” Each week, I’ll be re-posting a few of my favorite posts from the past ten years.

You might also be interested in:

 A Look Back: Best Posts From 2007 To 2009 

 A Look Back: 2010’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2011’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2012’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2013’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2014’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2015’s Best Posts From This Blog

This post originally appeared in 2016:

Danger Deep WaterCreative Commons License Michael Reilly via Compfight

As regular readers know, I’m a big fan of the growth mindset concept (see The Best Resources On Helping Our Students Develop A “Growth Mindset”) , though not entirely an uncritical one (see Our Students Are Not Supermen & Superwomen and The Limits To The Power Of A Growth Mindset (& The Dangers When We Don’t Recognize Them) )

Carol Dweck, Susana Claro and PERTS Lab founder David Paunesku just published a big new study – today – on the use of a growth mindset with students in country of Chile.

Education Week has a nice summary of it. You can read the study here, though it’s behind a paywall.

My layperson’s analysis of it is that it offers, as this blog post’s headline says, “opportunities and dangers.”

OPPORTUNITIES

It certainly provides support to those of us who want to spend time in the classroom teaching about and reinforcing a growth mindset with our students.  The study says that students having a growth mindset  from families with an income in the lowest ten percentile achieved comparable test scores to students with a fixed mindset who came from families with the 80th family income percentile.

That seemed way too good to be true, even for a believer like me.  I wondered if, perhaps, one factor mitigating this kind of leap could be if income inequality was considerably less there than here (that issue has been found to influence many aspects of people’s lives – see The Best Resources About Wealth & Income Inequality — Help Me Create A Simple Lesson Plan Using Them).  Much to my surprise, I learned that Chile is one of the few countries in the world with a higher degree of income equality than the United States!

So, unless I’m missing something, and I’m open to being told I am, it seems like an impressive result demonstrating the potential positive impact of emphasizing a growth mindset in school.

The study also found that “the lowest-income Chilean students were twice as likely as the highest income students to report a fixed mindset…” It suggests that, as other research has shown (see The Best Articles About The Study Showing Social Emotional Learning Isn’t Enough ), some of the difficulties some people who come from low-income communities have in applying certain Social Emotional Learning skills to academic endeavors are as a consequence of the socio-economic challenges they face, not the other way around.  I do wish, though, the researchers had put a little more “meat” into that explanation.

DANGERS

Unfortunately, the “Let Them Eat Character” crowd could very well use these kinds of results to push for growth-mindset lessons instead of providing adequate support for schools, students and their families.

The researchers end with – what seems to me, at least – this attempt to inoculate themselves against being accused of supporting that kind of strategy:

“To be clear, we are not suggesting that structural factors, like income inequality or disparities in school quality, are less important than psychological factors. Nor are we saying that teaching students a growth mindset is a substitute for systemic efforts to alleviate poverty and economic inequality. Such claims would stand at odds with decades of research and our own data. Rather, we are suggesting that structural inequalities can give rise to psychological inequalities and that those psychological inequalities can reinforce the impact of structural inequalities on achievement and future opportunity. As such, research on psychological factors can help illuminate one set of processes through which economic disadvantage leads to academic underachievement and reveal ways to more effectively support students who face additional challenges because of their socioeconomic circumstances.”

I’m not sure when your entire paper can be easily interpreted as saying that having a growth mindset can eliminate most of the achievement (or better, “opportunity”) gap, this short paragraph is enough…

If you can get though the paywall, or if you can at least read the Ed Week summary, let me know what you think of my analysis….

January 26, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

A Look Back: “Finding Dory,” Growth Mindset & Grit

In February, this blog will be celebrating its ten-year anniversary! Leading up to it, I’m re-starting a series I tried to do in the past called “A Look Back.” Each week, I’ll be re-posting a few of my favorite posts from the past ten years.

You might also be interested in:

 A Look Back: Best Posts From 2007 To 2009 

 A Look Back: 2010’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2011’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2012’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2013’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2014’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2015’s Best Posts From This Blog

This post originally appeared in 2016:

283805044

I’ve just returned from seeing the movie “Finding Dory,” and feel like it’s the perfect movie to illustrate the best points of a growth mindset and grit, two concepts that are sometimes misused.

Here is the definition that I’m most comfortable with when talking about those characteristics:

the-fuller-formula-for

Dory – along with Marlin and his son, Nemo – showed an enormous amount of effort, deployed numerous different strategies, and sought and received a great deal of help in the search for Dory’s parents.

You might also be interested in The Best Resources For Learning About “Grit” and ‘It’s Time to Change the Conversation About Grit.”

January 15, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

A Look Back: “I Did My Best Job Teaching A “Growth Mindset” Today – Here’s The Lesson Plan”

In February, this blog will be celebrating its ten-year anniversary! Leading up to it, I’m re-starting a series I tried to do in the past called “A Look Back.” Each week, I’ll be re-posting a few of my favorite posts from the past ten years.

You might also be interested in:

 A Look Back: Best Posts From 2007 To 2009 

 A Look Back: 2010’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2011’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2012’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2013’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2014’s Best Posts From This Blog

A Look Back: 2015’s Best Posts From This Blog

This post was originally published in 2016:

As regular readers know, I’m a big believer in teaching and implementing strategies to promote a growth mindset (see The Best Resources On Helping Our Students Develop A “Growth Mindset”). Plus, you can find additional related lesson plans in my books.

Today, I tried a new version with my IB Theory of Knowledge classes that went very well. In fact, I think it’s the best one I’ve ever done, and it’s very simple.

Here’s what I did:

Students came in to the class finding the phrase “Growth Mindset” on the overhead. I asked people to raise their hand if they had every heard of it before today. A fair number had, since we have a big focus on Social Emotional Learning at our school. I explained that the class today would be a refresher for them and an introduction to those who didn’t know much about it.

I explained that I was going to show three videos (happily, none were blocked by The Best Ways To Deal With YouTube’s Awful Safety Mode).  Each video, I said, would illustrate elements of having a growth mindset.  I told them I wanted to write down on a sheet of paper what elements they saw exhibited in the video and how they were demonstrated.

Here were the videos I showed (I gave students a minute to write after each video, every other row of students would move up one seat after each clip to share with a partner, and I would then ask a few students to say what they wrote to the entire class). These videos and more can be found at The Best TV/Movie Scenes Demonstrating A “Growth Mindset” – Help Me Find More:

Here’s the combined list of Growth Mindset qualities both of my classes developed:

growth

Then, after I gave students a very quick introduction to Carol Dweck and shared a story about my meeting a person who worked with Gandhi who told me that the key to Gandhi’s success was “that he looked at every problem as an opportunity, not as a pain in the butt,” I gave students copies of this NPR report, Students’ View of Intelligence Can Help Grades.  I had them rotate again, alternate reading paragraphs out loud with their partner, and then write a paragraph responding to this prompt:

According to Carol Dweck, what is a “growth mindset” and why is it important? Do you agree with what Dweck is saying? To support your opinion you may use examples from your own experiences, your observations of others, and any of your readings (including this article).

After they wrote their paragraphs, they rotated again and read them to their partner. I called up one student to share it on the overhead and had them read their piece to the class (I’ll actually be publishing a sample of them on this blog over the weekend).

Then, I showed the well-known “Two Mindsets” diagram on the overhead, quickly reviewed it, and told an example from my life for three on the list — challenges (changing careers to become a teacher); obstacles (explaining how I lost the game for my basketball team this week but I didn’t quit the team and, instead, plan on practicing my shooting this weekend) and criticism (how I learned a lot from the anonymous class evaluations students did of my last week). After writing a few words about each one on the growth mindset side of the diagram, I explained that I was going to give students copies and wanted them to think and briefly about when they had exhibited those growth mindset qualities in their own lives. We were running short of time by then, so I only gave them a few minutes, explaining that they didn’t have to write something about every one of the qualities.

We rotated again, students shared with a partner, followed by my calling on a few students to share what they wrote.

Then, with only a few minutes left in the period, I told students that at the top of the growth mindset side of the diagram, I wanted them to write as many adjectives as they could think of that would describe how they felt during and after the moments they acted with a growth mindset. My example was that I felt “confident” in myself after successfully changing careers.

I finished-up by calling on some students (though, in my second class, I had enough time to have everyone share), and got a ton of great words, including inspired, strong, delighted, successful, etc.

It went very, very well. I’ll still do my other growth mindset lesson plans (those are designed for English Language Learners and for ninth-grade students facing challenges), but this one is a big winner, too!

Feedback is welcome!

December 16, 2016
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

New Carol Dweck Interview On Having A “False Growth Mindset”

Carol Dweck has been talking and writing about the dangers of a “false growth mindset” over the past year, and you can find links to those commentaries at The Best Resources On Helping Our Students Develop A “Growth Mindset.”

The Atlantic has new interview with her that they published today headlined How Praise Became a Consolation Prize.

Here’s an excerpt:

a-lot-of-parents-or

A new edition of her book is apparently coming out with a section on her concerns about having a “false growth mindset.”

I’ve appreciated her recognition of how some might be applying her research harmfully, and wish others would take similar responsibilities for how their work is used. I’ve commented before about how I wish more researchers would not take a hands-off approach to what happens to their research after it’s published (“Once the rockets are up who cares where they come down that’s not my department,” says Wernher von Braun).

I’ve also expressed concerns about how Dweck addresses that point – in the past, she’s framed some of her critique of a false growth mindset as part of questioning the importance of deliberate practice. That is not present in her interview, though.

The bottom line, though, is that it’s a good discussion to be having…

August 10, 2016
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

“Begin the new School Year With a Positive ‘Mindset'”

Begin the new School Year With a Positive ‘Mindset’ is the headline of Part Three in my Education Week Teacher series on best ways to begin the school year.

In it, Jen Schwanke, Kevin Scott, Pia Lindquist Wong, and Otis Kriegel provide their ideas on the topic.

Here are some excerpts:

I-start-every-school

Think-innovatively-about

On-the-first-day-of

Who-knows-your-students

July 18, 2016
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

Opportunities & Dangers Of Big New Growth Mindset Study

Danger Deep WaterCreative Commons License Michael Reilly via Compfight

As regular readers know, I’m a big fan of the growth mindset concept (see The Best Resources On Helping Our Students Develop A “Growth Mindset”) , though not entirely an uncritical one (see Our Students Are Not Supermen & Superwomen and The Limits To The Power Of A Growth Mindset (& The Dangers When We Don’t Recognize Them) )

Carol Dweck, Susana Claro and PERTS Lab founder David Paunesku just published a big new study – today – on the use of a growth mindset with students in country of Chile.

Education Week has a nice summary of it. You can read the study here, though it’s behind a paywall.

My layperson’s analysis of it is that it offers, as this blog post’s headline says, “opportunities and dangers.”

OPPORTUNITIES

It certainly provides support to those of us who want to spend time in the classroom teaching about and reinforcing a growth mindset with our students.  The study says that students having a growth mindset  from families with an income in the lowest ten percentile achieved comparable test scores to students with a fixed mindset who came from families with the 80th family income percentile.

That seemed way too good to be true, even for a believer like me.  I wondered if, perhaps, one factor mitigating this kind of leap could be if income inequality was considerably less there than here (that issue has been found to influence many aspects of people’s lives – see The Best Resources About Wealth & Income Inequality — Help Me Create A Simple Lesson Plan Using Them).  Much to my surprise, I learned that Chile is one of the few countries in the world with a higher degree of income equality than the United States!

So, unless I’m missing something, and I’m open to being told I am, it seems like an impressive result demonstrating the potential positive impact of emphasizing a growth mindset in school.

The study also found that “the lowest-income Chilean students were twice as likely as the highest income students to report a fixed mindset…” It suggests that, as other research has shown (see The Best Articles About The Study Showing Social Emotional Learning Isn’t Enough ), some of the difficulties some people who come from low-income communities have in applying certain Social Emotional Learning skills to academic endeavors are as a consequence of the socio-economic challenges they face, not the other way around.  I do wish, though, the researchers had put a little more “meat” into that explanation.

DANGERS

Unfortunately, the “Let Them Eat Character” crowd could very well use these kinds of results to push for growth-mindset lessons instead of providing adequate support for schools, students and their families.

The researchers end with – what seems to me, at least – this attempt to inoculate themselves against being accused of supporting that kind of strategy:

“To be clear, we are not suggesting that structural factors, like income inequality or disparities in school quality, are less important than psychological factors. Nor are we saying that teaching students a growth mindset is a substitute for systemic efforts to alleviate poverty and economic inequality. Such claims would stand at odds with decades of research and our own data. Rather, we are suggesting that structural inequalities can give rise to psychological inequalities and that those psychological inequalities can reinforce the impact of structural inequalities on achievement and future opportunity. As such, research on psychological factors can help illuminate one set of processes through which economic disadvantage leads to academic underachievement and reveal ways to more effectively support students who face additional challenges because of their socioeconomic circumstances.”

I’m not sure when your entire paper can be easily interpreted as saying that having a growth mindset can eliminate most of the achievement (or better, “opportunity”) gap, this short paragraph is enough…

If you can get though the paywall, or if you can at least read the Ed Week summary, let me know what you think of my analysis….

 

July 2, 2016
by Larry Ferlazzo
0 comments

“Finding Dory,” Growth Mindset & Grit

283805044

I’ve just returned from seeing the movie “Finding Dory,” and feel like it’s the perfect movie to illustrate the best points of a growth mindset and grit, two concepts that are sometimes misused.

Here is the definition that I’m most comfortable with when talking about those characteristics:

the-fuller-formula-for

Dory – along with Marlin and his son, Nemo – showed an enormous amount of effort, deployed numerous different strategies, and sought and received a great deal of help in the search for Dory’s parents.

You might also be interested in The Best Resources For Learning About “Grit” and ‘It’s Time to Change the Conversation About Grit.”

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