Last week, my oldest daughter (Aubrey) and I had the opportunity to go hiking in Colorado. The culminating event was a 7.5 mile (one way) journey while ascending over 3000 feet to Crater Lake, which lies at the base of Lone Eagle Peak. There were several times that my daughter felt that she could not or did not want to continue on the hike, but persevered nonetheless. I must admit, there were times I was not sure she would make it myself. Much to her surprise, she made the journey to the spot, and perhaps more importantly, back to the car before dark.
The point of the story is to remind us that our students are incredible human beings that have the capacity to do so much more than we (or even they) often give them credit for. Research has found that increasing a student’s growth mindset can have a positive effect on their learning, but a recent study by the Stanford Graduate School of Education found that even more effective is increasing the growth mindset of our teachers.
My challenge to our staff this year is to work on increasing our own growth mindset, while continuing to work on those of our students, never limiting their or our capacity to learn.