The first step towards a successful and happy life is the right mindset. The earlier we develop it, the more empowered, resilient and confident we become. 

Beliefs shape us, form our mindset, and help us make sense of ourselves and the world. Our attitude determines how we think, feel and behave in any given situation; therefore, it regulates one’s achievements and success. 

Dr Carol Dweck, a leading researcher in the field, identified two types of mindsets in her research at Stanford University: Fixed and growth mindsets. She coined the concepts of growth and fixed mindsets in her book “Mindsets: The Psychology of Success”. Read on to understand how the two mindsets affect students:

What Is a Growth Mindset?

Individuals with a growth mindset understand that intelligence and ability aren’t predetermined. They believe that, given enough time and effort into their work, their skills become better and stronger. They also believe in their ability to learn anything and are motivated to persevere, despite setbacks.  Learning becomes their passion, and they view failure as a stepping stone towards success. They always remain receptive to feedback and work hard towards improving their performance. 

Growth mindsets allow people to refine their skills and enhance their performance in everything they do. In turn, one can remain positive in their outlook on life by remaining confident and resilient.

What Is a Fixed Mindset?

People with a fixed mindset believe the exact opposite. They believe their intelligence, abilities, skills, and talents are fixed traits that cannot be altered in a meaningful way. Therefore mistakes are seen as failures. People with a fixed mindset avoid risks and challenges and fear unfamiliar experiences. They believe they lack natural skills and talent, especially when faced with challenging situations. Therefore they tend to stay in their comfort zone.    

Fixed Mindset vs Growth Mindset

A comparison of the fixed and growth mindsets will tell you at a glance which one to embrace and why!

Fixed MindsetGrowth Mindset
Perceives abilities as fixed and innateSeeks to build abilities, practice and perfect them
Avoids challengesConsiders challenges as a route to learning 
Give up easilyPerseveres to learn from failure and achieve success
Ignores feedbackAccepts criticism
Unable to admit to mistakes and take responsibilityOwns up to mistakes and learns from them
Threatened by other people’s success, which gives rise to jealousy and other negative emotionsFinds inspiration in other people’s success
Desires to look smartDesires to learn
Bogged down by the hard workReady to work hard and succeed
Negative and limitingPositive and sets free

Positive Effects of Growth Mindset in Education

A growth mindset has various benefits and is immensely necessary for children working their way towards success in a constantly changing world. Below are a few insights into the benefits:

  • Strengthens belief in the potential to learn: Students with a growth mindset believe that they can learn and become good at anything they want if they put in the required effort correctly. In other words, they view intelligence as something that can be developed and not set in stone. 
  • Encourages intrinsic motivation to learn: When students believe they have the potential for achievement, they are more likely to practice and put in more effort to overcome their weaknesses. It automatically paves the way to achieve success. 
  • Reduces anxiety and brings down stress levels: People with a growth mindset see each failure as an opportunity to grow and improve. They take the lesson from their setbacks and use it in their other challenges, which helps them attain a sense of peace and tranquillity. 
  • A growth mindset encourages them to persevere:  Even when the going gets tough, the student with a growth mindset is motivated enough to work hard and overcome the obstacles instead of quitting. 
  • Makes them resilient and confident: The change in relationship with struggles and their outcomes makes students resilient and confident.  
  • Eagerness to try new things: Since they develop a healthy response to failure, students with a growth mindset are willing to try unfamiliar things. It has a positive effect on the overall learning process.
  • Positive effect on grades and test scores: A growth mindset positively affects the learning and outcomes in the classroom. It leads to improved performance and better grades in assessments and tests.    
  • Helps make happy and patient children: They learn to give themselves time to pick and master a skill. They begin to value their progress at whatever pace it takes place. All these factors contribute towards a sense of satisfaction and contentment that leads to happiness.

10 Ways Parents can Encourage a Growth Mindset in their Children

A learning mindset is a fundamental approach a student takes to learning. Having seen the benefits of a growth mindset for students, let us learn how to develop a growth mindset and encourage students to adopt it as their learning mindset. 

  • Please encourage your children to accept their flaws: It is the most important thing you can do for any child. When they identify and accept their flaws, they can be easily encouraged to work and overcome them. Tell them it is possible to make baby-step progress, so it is no longer a stumbling block. 
  • Assist kids in valuing obstacles as chances for improvement: Help your children view obstacles as a chance to learn something new. It encourages them to look forward to challenges.  
  • Use various teaching techniques: Different children have different learning styles; therefore, no one-size-fits-all technique will cater to everyone. A mix and match of multiple methods help identify your child’s learning style. Live demonstrations, experiments, videos, and additional reading materials are some techniques to offer them. 
  • Include Basic Gamification Elements: There is a reason why interactive video games are so popular and have so many gamers hooked. What if you could use those game-based elements to improve learning outcomes for your child? Point scoring, peer competition, teamwork, score tables and self-tracking of progress are some gaming elements to adopt in the teaching and learning process to encourage positive outcomes for your child.  
  • Please encourage students to elaborate on their answers: Do not expect your child to answer questions merely. Please enable them to elaborate and explain their answers. It inspires them to dig beneath the surface and gives them more learning opportunities. Further, it allows them to analyse their responses, strengthening their understanding and committing the concepts to their long-term memory. 
  • Cultivate a sense of purpose: It helps to have a purpose, as working towards a purpose is more accessible and meaningful. Please encourage your child to find it and work towards that goal. 
  • Celebrate growth with others: Encourage your child to celebrate success and progress with others rather than individual achievement. It inspires children to help each other along the way so they grow into kind, accepting and non-judgemental beings. They will grow up and contribute towards the benefit of society.
  • Separate improvement from failure: In a task, make it a point to notice your child’s efforts irrespective of the outcome. It encourages perseverance and scope for repeated trials. Make sure the improvements, however small, are recognised. It inspires the kid to work hard and overcome difficulties to achieve success.  
  • Provide regular opportunities for reflection: Give your child the time and opportunities to review their work. It helps them identify their strengths and weaknesses and encourages them to work on their weaknesses to turn them around.

CMRNPS is the School for Your Child!

There is no doubt that a growth mindset can help bring out the best in your child. Encourage a growth mindset in your child by enrolling them in CMRNPS, which draws on the legacy of the CMR Group of Institutions and is one of the best CBSE schools in Bangalore. The CMR group has been in the field of education for 30 years. Add to it the experience of starting and successfully running 24 educational institutions. Under the aegis of the CMR group, the school has tremendously benefitted from all the knowledge and learning. We at CMRNPS use the wisdom from the past to create a better future. We seek out the latest developments in the field and offer the best platform to turn dreams into realities. The experienced teachers here strive to emotionally and academically nurture your child and help them become successful citizens of society. The teachers inspire and equip the students with the tools that will turn them into lifelong learners. They pick the ropes to adapt to the changing ways of the world that keep them ahead of the times. Welcome to CMRNPS!

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