How does your child think about themselves? Do they believe they can get better at things? That's growth mindset. Do they feel like they aren't smart, brave, strong, or good? That is a fixed mindset. Growth mindset means that your child believes they can become smarter through effort. They believe their abilities are something they have control over. We call this efficacy.
So how can we help our children have a growth mindset? The best way is through modeling. Do you as a parent behave as if you can get smarter, improve, or gain new abilities? Reflect on the ways you show your children that you do believe you have control over your abilities. Children pick up on your beliefs even if you don't say them aloud. Make sure you are modeling growth mindset for your children.
Another way parents can support the creation of a growth mindset in their students is to "praise the process". Rather than giving your students praise for success and results, make efforts to praise them during the efforts. We call this "praising the process". Praise them for trying hard. Praise them for trying over and over again. When they fail, encourage them to fail forward, learning from their mistakes. At such a young age, the success is not nearly as important at the process. This style of praise helps children build perseverance and a belief can improve. In short, it creates a growth mindset.
For parents of older children, below is a link to a list of young adult novels that role model growth mindset.
I have written occasionally on here about unplugging from technology, both for the parents and the students perspective. But let's face it, we are all using our devices these days. Believe it or not, many of the ways we use our devices can foster positive healthy relationships with our children. Here are some Apps I recommend to do a little parent-child relationship hacking.
1. iRewardChart: iRewardChart is an app that brings the traditional reward chart onto a mobile device, with customizable features, making it about you and your child. iRewardChart looks to help parents keep track of their child’s good behavior, and reward them appropriately.
2. Cozi Family Organizer: Cozi is the must-have organizer for families. It helps coordinate and communicate everyone’s schedules and activities, track grocery lists, manage to do lists, plan ahead for dinner, and keep the whole family on the same page.
3. Winnie: Winnie's mission is to make parents' lives easier through technology. Whether you want to ask other parents for advice, find new things to do with your kids, or just get to the nearest changing table in a hurry, we can help. Because Winnie Features cities all over the country, its even useful on vacation or visiting family.
4. ChoreMonster: With ChoreMonster, kids will look forward to doing their chores daily. This is because ChoreMonster is set up by parents, and you can even choose what kinds of rewards the kids will receive upon completing their chores.
5. Hub Family Organizer: Similar to Cozi, Hub keeps your home and family organized, using shared calendars, lists, tasks, notes and more. Hub Family Organizer is Everything you need to manage your busy lives.
Erin Rae is the Curriculum Coordinator at Lockport 91.