Chigozie Nnodim on “Growth Mindset”

Chigozie Nnodim Growth MindsetWhat is a growth mindset? The concept originated with world-renowned Stanford University Psychologist Carol Dweck, who defined a “mindset” as a perception, or “self-theory” that people hold about themselves. For example, believing you’re intelligent or unintelligent is a mindset perception. It is said a person can be either aware, or unaware of their mindsets but, regardless, mindsets have a significant impact on their learning achievement, skill acquisition, personal relationships, and professional success. Dweck found that there are two types of mindsets: fixed, and growth. This discovery shed new light on how we view ourselves, and our abilities.

Fixed vs Growth Mindset

The struggle between fixed and growth mindsets can be a daily challenge. A fixed mindset is the belief that basic qualities, like intelligence, are fixed traits, and that talent alone creates success, without effort. People with this mindset often believe that an individual is either intelligent or unintelligent, and there is no way to change it. Research shows that people with a fixed mindset tend to learn less than they could, or at a slower rate, and may shy away from challenges, due to a fear that poor performance may confirm what they already believe about themselves. Conversely, a growth mindset is the belief that an individual’s most basic qualities can be developed through dedication and hard work, and that “brains” and “talent” are only starting points. It is the belief that you can learn more, or become smarter if you work hard and persevere. As a result, this type of mindset fosters resilience, and a love for learning. Students with this mindset learn more, more quickly, and view challenges as opportunities to improve their learning and skills, rather than opportunities for failure.

Nature or Nurture?

Growth mindset is a simple idea that can make all the difference, as the concept has been found to increase motivation and productivity in arenas as diverse as business, education, and sports. It’s also been shown to enhance personal relationships. While it is no secret that each individual is unique, and that people differ in many ways, some experts claim that there’s a strong physical basis for these differences. However, other experts point to the differences in people’s backgrounds, life experience, training, and ways of learning. Research is split on who is right, though scientists and educators increasingly looking toward a middle ground, between the two poles. It’s not nature or nurture; it’s a give-and-take between the two. Neuroscientist Gilbert Gottlieb noted that genes and the environment tend to cooperate as we develop; genes, in fact, require input from the environment to work effectively. Scientists have also learned that, in general, people have more capacity for lifelong learning and brain development than previously thought. Indeed, while people may start life with different temperaments and aptitudes, it’s clear that experience, training, and personal effort take them the rest of the way.

Growth Mindset in the Classroom

When Dweck recently revisited growth mindset, she found that student’s mindsets played a key role in motivation, and subsequent achievements; in other words, if you change a student’s mindset, you can boost achievement. Studies demonstrated that students who believed their intelligence could be developed outperformed those who believed their intelligence was fixed. When students learned through structured programs that they could “grow their brains”, and increase their intellectual abilities, they did better overall.

The most common misconception about Dweck’s theory is that a growth mindset is synonymous with effort. Instead, students need to try new strategies, and seek input from others when they’re stuck. All too often, teachers give praise to students who put forth effort, but aren’t learning, in order to reward the student in the moment. Unlike this approach, the growth mindset helps students feel good in both the short and long term, by helping them to thrive when faced with challenges and setbacks, on their path to learning. When a student is stuck, teachers can appreciate their work, but add, “let’s talk about what you’ve tried, and what you can try next”. Growth mindset is about being honest about a student’s current achievement and then, together, helping him or her achieve academic success.

“Mindset Works” founder, Lisa Blackwell, conducted a study a group of 7th graders in an inner-city NYC school. Blackwell and her colleagues divided their students into two groups: a control group were taught about the various stages of memory, and the other half received training in the growth mindset.  The growth mindset group showed an increase in effort and motivation of up to three times that of the control group. After the training, the control group showed continuously declining grades, while the growth-mindset group demonstrated a consistent increase in performance.

Growth Mindset and the Educator

Teachers who ask themselves, “what can I do to promote a growth mindset in students?” may be interested to know that the mindset of a teacher has been found to impact the mindset of their students. Research also supports the idea that educator mindsets may influence the way they respond to students, which in turn has an impact on the students’ outcomes. In a 2012 study, Rattan, et al. found that teachers with a mindset that was “fixed” regarding their individual math abilities were more likely to judge students as having low potential than their growth-minded counterparts. Additionally, educators with a fixed mindset were more likely to comfort students about their perceived low math abilities and apply kind strategies. They used “comfort-oriented” feedback, in which students were told that their inability to succeed at math was “okay”, and attempted to make math easier by lowering expectations. A separate study, the same paper, reported that comfort-oriented feedback was linked to lower motivation in students, as well as lower expectations for their own performance, when compared with “strategy-oriented” feedback.

4 Ways Teachers Can Encourage a Growth Mindset in Students

  1. Think about setting achievable micro-goals to encourage students’ consistent, incremental progress. Small wins repeated over time can lead to a growth mindset (and increased confidence!).
  2. When students succeed, praise their efforts and strategies instead of their intelligence.
  3. Help students focus on and value the process of learning. Without this emphasis on learning, students will often base self-perceptions of intelligence and worth to grades received, promoting a fixed mindset. While grades are important, the value of learning should be prioritized.
  4. Design classroom activities that involve cooperative–rather than competitive or individualistic–work. Research suggests that students are more motivated and successful when working in groups. Students feel a sense of responsibility to the group to try their best, and thus will experience the positive feedback loop of effort and success, encouraging the development of a growth mindset.

 

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Mr. Loren’s Neighborhood

Spotlight on ONEder teacher, Loren Svetvilas, of Livingston Public Schools

Loren Svetvilas, a pre-K special education teacher at Burnet Hill Elementary, in Livingston, New Jersey, had a dream; and it was “tiny”. In Loren’s telling, “it [was] 4.30 in the morning on a weekend, and I was thinking… [wouldn’t it be] fun to make shoe box houses for [all our students] and…  make a little village?” This idea was the genesis of Livingston Public Schools’ “Tiny Village” project, which recreated the township of Livingston, in miniature.

Loren and his fellow Burnet Hill Elementary educators had been teaching a curriculum focused on specific themes like “clothing” and “water”, to prepare students with pre-readiness skills. These units were implemented in six week blocks, and would involve a variety of activities. Loren used the classic tale of Goldilocks and the Three Bears to introduce his class to the theme of “chairs”; activities included asking students to compare the sizes of various rockers and recliners, and “[even] discuss[ing] the animals… and cook[ing] porridge”. The themes scheduled for early 2017 were “buildings”, and “boxes”.  When Loren and his fellow educators agreed to merge those subjects, the “Tiny Village” was born.

Mr. Loren's Neighborhood
Image courtesy of Livingston Public Schools

 

It takes a Vilage
Image courtesy of Livingston Public Schools

It Takes a Village

Loren believes that “collaboration [between educators] can sometimes be difficult”, with the lack of “free time” available: a challenge for any district. Loren and his colleagues overcame this obstacle by meeting during their professional planning time. Technology, he notes, was key to the success of their collaboration: “[technology] was the unifying piece that brought us together…  creating working docs so we [could collaborate] online, and then meeting [either in person or virtually]”.

Loren and his colleagues then took their ideas to the classroom. Loren completed a chart mapping exercise with his students to “find out what they know… [about] buildings and boxes. I just wanted to get some feedback. Do buildings have floors? Ceilings? Windows?”  While Burnet Elementary’s pre-K classes were initially tasked with constructing their own, individual towns, the scale of the project soon expanded; the six classrooms, along with local businesses and municipal departments collaborated on the creation of one, large-scale “tiny” village. According to Loren, “the police [and fire] department[s] were super excited; they were very competitive. [The police department] were [determined] to make theirs better than the fire department’s!” The local shoe store donated garbage bags filled with shoe boxes.

 

Fire Station
Image courtesy of Livingston Public Schools
livingston police
Image courtesy of Livingston Public Schools

The “opening” of Livingston’s “tiny” counterpart was attended by local dignitaries, rallying behind the message that it “takes a village” to successfully raise a child. Loren was astonished by the level of involvement: “the town council came; the Board of Education sent a representative”.  Even Livingston’s mayor was in attendance, inaugurating the village with a ribbon-cutting ceremony.

tiny village ribbon cutting
Image courtesy of Livingston Public Schools

ONEder and Looking to the Future

Loren hopes to repeat the project’s success, and make the tiny village an annual celebration of Livingston’s diverse and inclusive community.  In addition to adding new landmarks, like the zoo from nearby West Orange, Loren would like to make use of tools like ONEder, to improve, and increase collaboration: “I can picture [us building our lessons] together in ONEder. It would be much more accessible and make it easy to jump in, grab it, tweak it, and throw up a new one that we think the team will like. Next year we’ll [also be adding] a ONEder building!”

Livingston Camera
Image courtesy of Livingston Public Schools
Burnet Hill Elementary Students
Image courtesy of Livingston Public Schools

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WIOA: Using Technology to Ensure Successful Transition From School to Life for Students With Disabilities

According to the Department of Labor, by 2020, there will be millions of jobs available without enough people to fill them. Conversely, by some estimates, nearly 85% of individuals with disabilities are under or unemployed. To help reduce those numbers, the US Department of Labor and the US Department of Education jointly finalized the Workforce Innovation Opportunity Act (WIOA) in October, 2016.

The new regulations and guidelines are intended to encourage “innovative strategies that support coordination to improve workforce development, employment services, and vocational rehabilitation services.” These WIOA goals and initiatives are achievable by implementing evidence-based practices, collecting accurate and timely data, enforcing accountability measures, and increasing adult basic education and literacy education– many of which can be achieved through the expanded use of technology.

WIOA is a unique and under-utilized resource for schools, organizations, and agencies with transitioning individuals aged 14-21 as is the use of technology to help those transitioning individuals with special needs. “One of the most exciting aspects of WIOA is the way it encourages the use of technology to aid in the transition process,” explains Dr. Alice Parker, Chairperson of the ONEder Advisory Board, “WIOA almost mandates using technology, in the form of data collection, which is really essential to being able to demonstrate program effectiveness for accountability measures, or an individual’s preparedness for work.”

Technology Uses

As mentioned previously, data collection isn’t the only case for using technology in transition programs. Using technology in transition can also help to:

● Personalize instruction or training for individuals with disabilities, making content accessible for each learner at their level.

● Differentiate career and interest inventories or skills assessments so they both accurately evaluate an individual’s strengths and uncover interests as well as provide relevant resources for those pursuing career and technical education (CTE) pathways.

● Provide resources, such as visual schedules, GPS-enabled routing maps, or timed reminders to increase a user’s self-determination.

● Include accommodations, such as text to speech or enlarged text, that are automatically enabled, to increase independence for those with disabilities.

Benefits of Using Technology

There are many benefits to using these kinds of technology with youth with disabilities who are undertaking the post-school transition in the CTE field. According to Melanie Johnson, Executive Director of Brite Success in Texas, one of the most important benefits of using technology with her clients is the way it provides ongoing support and resources to ensure her clients are successful on the job. “By giving my clients a tool to refer to when they need it – whether it’s a visual schedule or tips for specific situations – we build self-determination, confidence, and enable them to become increasingly independent.”

Another benefit is increasing capacity. When the Arc of Northern Virginia created a travel curriculum (TravelMate) using the ONEder special education platform, they saw an eight-fold increase in the number of individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities (IDD) who were serviced by their partner organizations. Almost 100% of program participants increased their ability to travel independently to and from work with less support, while nearly half increased their ability to travel independently alone with TravelMate.

TravelMate project coordinator Kymberly DeLoatche, explains, “One of the hallmarks of this project is that it has changed the expectation of travel training for individuals with IDD. Before the project, everyone involved with people with IDD knew travel training was a necessary piece of transition to adulthood and employment from the school system, but no one knew quite how to accomplish it in a real or sustainable way. With the provision of TravelMate through The Arc of Northern Virginia’s Travel Training Program, which was developed using information from Easter Seals Project Action and WMATA’s own guidelines and resources, now teachers have a usable curriculum that is available in a way that engages these individuals and that they can utilize at home to practice so that the professional, the individual seeking to use public transit, and their family members are ALL empowered to work towards achieving this skill, which is so desperately needed for a higher level of independence.”

Finally, using technology allows individuals with disabilities to blend in rather than to stand out. “Imagine, how much more inclusive it is to have a smartphone or iPad – just like your peers – instead of having a job coach shadow your every move,” said ONEder Advisory Board member Dr. Alexa Posny. “By using technology just like everyone else, you bridge the gap between individuals with disabilities and their peers building an environment of true inclusion.“ “With my ONEder app, I can do more things without help and without looking like someone different,” explained PJ, a Brite Success client working in Walgreens.

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Automatic Accommodations: Now Available In ONEder!

The ONEder Player now includes the ability to provide students with automatic accommodations that will be automatically applied to every ONEder lesson they access! Once assigned, the accommodations become visible in the lower left corner of the activity pane:

From left to right, the pictured accommodations include a calculator:

Large print:

And highlighted text:

Each automatic accommodation can be toggled on or off as desired at any time!


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How To Reset Your ONEder Password

Did you know that, if you forgot your ONEder password, you can reset it yourself in a matter of minutes without having to call the ONEder Support Center? Just go to app.oneder.com and click the forgot password link on the login screen!

Enter the email address associated with your ONEder account on the next screen, then click Send. An email with instructions on setting or resetting your password will arrive in your inbox within minutes!


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Exploring A Career In Child Care // This Week’s Downloadable Oneder Lessons

Oneder

We’re excited to share the newest lesson added to the Oneder Shared Library. Each lesson and activity can be customized to support the needs of your learner or student.

Oneder lessons are a complete package of materials and goals to support each learner in all environments. Once downloaded, you can edit any aspect of the lesson to best support the needs of each learner.

Oneder lessons are available for free to all Oneder users.


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Interested in learning how Oneder can benefit you and your students? Click the Learn More button below and we’ll be in touch!

Lesson: Exploring A Career In Childcare
Location: Work
Domain: Vocational
Subdomain: Specific Training

In this beginner learner lesson the student will be introduced to basic interpersonal skills needed to become a child care worker, including a descriptive video, visual schedule and choice boards.

To download lessons from the shared library:
1. Click on the Shared Library tab on the left side of the screen in the Oneder Editor
2. Locate the desired lesson
3. Click ‘Download’ for desired lesson
4. The lesson will appear under your lessons in the teacher dashboard. From here it can be edited, assigned to students, and published.

Oneder

To differentiate this lesson
Intermediate Learner: Incorporate a choice board that will serve as a question activity with facts from the video regarding working as a child care worker.

Advanced Learner: Add a questionnaire for the learner with more questions related to his/her interest in such a position. You can also include different scenarios that can occur during a Child Care worker working day, and discuss different ways to handle them.

Goal targeted within this lesson
1. The learner will identify the needed interpersonal skills for becoming a Child Care Worker in (%) of the occasions.


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To learn more about Oneder, sign up for a demo here!

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Prefixes And Suffixes // This Week’s Downloadable Oneder Lessons

Oneder

We’re excited to share the newest lesson added to the Oneder Shared Library. Each lesson and activity can be customized to support the needs of your learner or student.

Oneder lessons are a complete package of materials and goals to support each learner in all environments. Once downloaded, you can edit any aspect of the lesson to best support the needs of each learner.

Oneder lessons are available for free to all Oneder users.


Maximize Your Students’ Potential With Oneder

Interested in learning how Oneder can benefit you and your students? Click the Learn More button below and we’ll be in touch!

Lesson: Prefixes and Suffixes
Location: School
Subject: ELA
Grade: 3

In this Beginner learner lesson the student will learn to identify and know the meaning of the most common prefixes and suffixes.

To download lessons from the shared library:
1. Click on the Shared Library tab on the left side of the screen in the Oneder Editor
2. Locate the desired lesson
3. Click ‘Download’ for desired lesson
4. The lesson will appear under your lessons in the teacher dashboard. From here it can be edited, assigned to students, and published.

Oneder

To differentiate this lesson
Intermediate Learner: Create a visual story with details relating to prefix and suffix. Add a visual schedule as a task notebook with words student will have to complete by using Prefix or Suffix, and a choice board with examples of prefixes and suffixes.

Advanced Learner: Create a choiceboard of prefixes and suffixes. Add a visual scene with a table that will include different words that need completion with either a prefix or a suffix.

Standard targeted within this lesson
Identify and know the meaning of the most common prefixes and derivational suffixes. [3.RF.3a]


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To learn more about Oneder, sign up for a demo here!

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Trick Or Treating // This Week’s Downloadable Oneder Lessons

Oneder

We’re excited to share the newest lesson added to the Oneder Shared Library. Each lesson and activity can be customized to support the needs of your learner or student.

Oneder lessons are a complete package of materials and goals to support each learner in all environments. Once downloaded, you can edit any aspect of the lesson to best support the needs of each learner.

Oneder lessons are available for free to all Oneder users.


Maximize Your Students’ Potential With Oneder

Interested in learning how Oneder can benefit you and your students? Click the Learn More button below and we’ll be in touch!

Lesson: Trick or Treating
Location: Miscellaneous
Subject: Other
Grade: N/A

In this intermediate learner lesson the student is supported in the situation of Trick or Treating. The learner is given safety tips regarding different aspects of the process, from leaving the house and until returning to it, using a video, a visual story, a schedule and a visual scene.

To download lessons from the shared library:
1. Click on the Shared Library tab on the left side of the screen in the Oneder Editor
2. Locate the desired lesson
3. Click ‘Download’ for desired lesson
4. The lesson will appear under your lessons in the teacher dashboard. From here it can be edited, assigned to students, and published.

Oneder

To differentiate this lesson
For a beginner learner, incorporate a video model showing appropriate behaviors while Trick or Treating, and include a choice board to support verbal expression.

For an advanced learner, promote independence by incorporating a schedule or a story with different examples of situations that can occur when knocking on a stranger’s door to discuss the recommended response.

Goal targeted within this lesson
The learner will use at least three safety tips in (%) of the time he spends Trick or Treating.


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To learn more about Oneder, sign up for a demo here!

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Halloween Math Activities // This Week’s Downloadable Oneder Lessons

Oneder

We’re excited to share the newest lesson added to the Oneder Shared Library. Each lesson and activity can be customized to support the needs of your learner or student.

Oneder lessons are a complete package of materials and goals to support each learner in all environments. Once downloaded, you can edit any aspect of the lesson to best support the needs of each learner.

Oneder lessons are available for free to all Oneder users.


Maximize Your Students’ Potential With Oneder

Interested in learning how Oneder can benefit you and your students? Click the Learn More button below and we’ll be in touch!

Lesson: Halloween Math Activities
Location: School
Subject: Math
Grade: 5

In this intermediate lesson the students are both exposed to the human bones in numbers, and are challenged thorough a math question activity and a worksheet working on both adding and multiplying numbers.

To download lessons from the shared library:
1. Click on the Shared Library tab on the left side of the screen in the Oneder Editor
2. Locate the desired lesson
3. Click ‘Download’ for desired lesson
4. The lesson will appear under your lessons in the teacher dashboard. From here it can be edited, assigned to students, and published.

Oneder

To differentiate this lesson
For a beginner learner, incorporate a visual schedule to break down the word problems into steps.

For an advanced learner, add more complex questions that involve larger numbers, and more functions, such as subtracting.

Standard Targeted within this lesson
Write simple expressions that record calculations with numbers, and interpret numerical expressions without evaluating them.


Maximize Your Students’ Potential With Oneder

Interested in learning how Oneder can benefit you and your students? Click the Learn More button below and we’ll be in touch!

To learn more about Oneder, sign up for a demo here!

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