Positive Minds Week
At Landywood, we launched our Growth Mindset curriculum back in September and we have seen some of the most impressive academic progress figures Landywood has ever seen. For example some children are making one years progress in just one term.
During December, all the pupils in our school had a fantastic week focussed on Positive Mindset. During the week every child participated in an art activities through which they learnt the importance of being positive and resilient. The outcomes of the week were not only amazing pieces of artwork but also a noticeable change in the children’s understanding of how important it is to be resilient and that when something can be tricky or challenging, it is about taking on the challenge of it in a positive, solution-focussed way.
During our special themed week, we organised Parent Workshops to help everyone understand the importance of a growth mindset this and how parents and carers can support the work of school at home. Please click on the links below to see the workshop slides and a parent guide.
We are continuing to work hard to ensure all our pupils at Landywood relish challenges, try different methods and learn from their mistakes to help develop their ‘growth mindset’. Our aim is that all our pupils accept that things are not always easy, but are willing to have a go and persevere, rather than giving up if they stumble at the first hurdle, whether it’s reading, writing, maths or sport.
A growth mindset is a person’s belief about the nature of intelligence. “It’s the belief that although we’re born with a certain level of intelligence, we can develop it throughout our lives through effort, strategies, facing challenges and learning from our mistakes,” explains Dr Hoskins. Conversely, if you have a fixed mindset, you believe that you’re born in a particular way and don’t have much scope for change. “If a person with a fixed mindset fails at something, they tell themselves that it’s just because of who they are and there’s not a lot they can do about it…Instead of persevering, they go into “self-protection” mode, where they try to hide the fact that they’re not doing well,” says Dr Hoskins.
Having high expectations for your child also helps them develop a growth mindset. “Children with a growth mindset who have high expectations and challenging tasks perform better, because low expectations create less growth in the brain,” Dr Hoskins explains. Bear in mind, that high expectations are not the same as pressure. Saying things like, ‘I need you to get this homework right or I’m going to be really disappointed’ will put your child under pressure, which could in turn lead to self-doubt and failure. But turning it round and saying, ‘I know you can do this if you put some effort in’ gives them belief in their own ability and the confidence to try, fail and try again.
Alongside setting high expectations, teach your child how to cope with their emotions. “Society has taught children that when they’re working on something challenging and their heart is racing, to interpret it negatively,” explains Dr Hoskins. At Landywood we teach them to reframe this so that instead of thinking, ‘My heart is pounding, it must be because I’m so bad at this,’ we are encouraging the children to think, ‘My heart is pounding, this is really hard but that means I’m learning lots.’
Below are two images which we hope will help you along with links to further information. There are also some photographs showing examples of the children’s artwork from the themed week too. We hope this information will help you further understand the work being undertaken in our school to help develop the culture of all our pupils have a growth mindset.
Growth Mindset Parents Guide