Monday, August 13, 2012


Charles Coiner, 1961, from Smithsonian American Art Museum

I am a huge fan of Carol Dweck’s work on people’s beliefs about the nature of intelligence. A student’s mindset has a measurable impact on his or her success in math, among other things.

We praised the children in one group for their intelligence, telling them, “Wow, that’s a really good score. You must be smart at this.” We praised the children in the other group for their effort: “Wow, that’s a really good score. You must have worked really hard.” That’s all we did, but the results were dramatic.

Doesn’t that statement make you want to read more? Here is a condensed version of Dweck’s research (you can read the book, Mindset, and find more articles here).

And here is a student-friendly version of the article. Perfect non-fiction reading for fourth and fifth graders!