How to help kids develop the growth mindset
Kids of a very young age are always about the “fun”, and this is how they learn things effortlessly. It’s a perfect phase of the growth mindset. Children at this age are considerably encouraged to learn new things and never worry about their mistakes.
Sadly, this is not the case when kids start their schooling. There is this subtle action of comparing a child with other kids starts to appear. Even though the intention is to motivate the kid to excel; it produces a contradictory result where the child feels low because it undermines his /her self- esteem.
You might think, but, wouldn’t kids acquire the growth mindset while growing up?
Yes and No. While right after we are born, all of us are different genetically in one or other way from each other, the rest of the skills are acquired while growing up. But acquiring a growth mindset means having the ability to strive for greatness and excellence.
Unfortunately, when kids repeatedly hear that they are not great at doing certain things, their mindset gets fixed with what they hear, and they tend to believe it.
The impacts of the fixed mindset are more dangerous than we know. It will make your kid stuck in a place where they decide not to try any more, and it is better to quit due to lack of confidence.
So how do you do gradually turn the fixed mindset into a growth mindset? It’s achieved only by nurturing the high hopes you have for your kid into decisive actions of reminding them how anything can be learnt, and mistakes are ok.
For example, your kid might not be able to copy dance postures off of the television. But he/she might have a broad spectrum of imagination in painting a picture.
Now, if your kid has a growth mindset, it will push them to learn to dance if that’s what they want to do. Stimulating this mindset in kids through activities is a smart step. Especially practising it from as early as possible makes it more effective. You can help your kid learn with positive reinforcements.
It is one of the best growth mindset quotes. When we teach kids not to give up until they put complete effort into a certain thing, it’s hard to beat them.
Here are four ways you can stimulate a growth mindset in your kids:
Teach your kid how the human brain works:
Kids are more enthusiastic and find new information fascinating. It would help if you taught your kids that the human brain could rewire with each unique experience and practice. So whenever your kid is learning something new and practising it, his/her brain is rewiring and becoming capable of adapting to the new ways.
Model their behaviour with a growth mindset:
Do not spurt out words like “I can’t do this”, “This is too hard”, “I can’t get it right” in front of your kids. Kids tend to mimic and model the behaviour they witness in their surroundings. Knowing that your kid is around you most of the time means you need to be cautious about what you say. Replace these negative sentences with positive affirmations like “I have to learn to do this”, “I will learn to do this eventually”, “and I will get it right once I learn it better”.
Do not label your kids:
Parents often try to hide their embarrassment when their kids fail to do something. They tend to say things like “She is not good in this subject”, “He can’t dance” et cetera in front of others. Overcome these challenges and enforce positive reactions like “She is still practising and is very resilient; I am sure she will do better next time”.
Use the magic words:
Yes, there is another magic word besides “please”. When you say “I can’t do this” and “I can’t do this YET” do you notice the difference. The second quote gives you a chance to be better and practice. This will help build confidence and resilience. Once you bring these changes in your behaviour and teach your kid the same, you are already one step ahead in the world.
Practice these below-mentioned sentence fragments mindfully with your kids. Teach your kids to use the growth mindset sentences often.