Principal’s Corner: What is growth mindset? Why is it so important?

Published 10:36 pm Friday, September 21, 2018

Principal’s Corner by Tonya Franks

Tonya Franks


Growth mindset is the belief that abilities and intelligence can be developed. When students understand they can get smarter, they exert more effort in their studies. Students who are willing to try new things, not give up and push themselves to do their best work have confidence in themselves and believe that they can learn, and will experience higher levels of achievement.

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Halverson Elementary School is excited to welcome NED’s Mindset Mission on Monday. Students will experience a school-wide assembly focusing on growth mindset. They will learn how to spark courage in others, how to keep learning and growing, and if you’re not good at something, it just means you’re not good at it yet. The Mindset Mission follows the character, NED, through a series of adventures. First, a yeti teaches NED to overcome Mount Everest’s toughest obstacles and never give up. Next, NED discovers inner treasures on a Caribbean island and how to encourage others. Finally, while repairing a sputtering spaceship, NED grows his brain while learning the message to do your best.

Parents can help with promoting a growth mindset also. Parents are a child’s first role model, so being aware of your own mindset can help with the message you send your child. It is also important to model learning from failure. Every mistake can and should be a learning experience. Mistakes are OK and are a natural part of the learning process. The saying “we all make mistakes” holds particularly true when teaching and learning the growth mindset process.

In our classrooms, we teach students their brain is like a muscle. It can be trained through repetition and practice. This may be repetition of routines in the classroom or academic skills. When students realize that they can grow their brain, they have developed a growth mindset. Commitment and hard work will lead to positive gains.

Tonya Franks is the principal of Halverson Elementary School.