IO 1 - Guidelines for growth mindset school culture

Our experience with the first MindSetGo! project showed the need for a growth mindset culture at school. A culture with a profound understanding of a growth mindset and evidence for how it contributes to a good learning environment.

To create a growth mindset culture, schools are required to move to an overall practice not just label actions or positive messages to students, nor encourage teaching approaches that contribute varied learning pathways for all students. To introduce a growth mindset only in a few classes can result in contradictory messages to students. For example, in one class they experience that the mistakes are welcome but in another class, they feel mistakes are punished or negative. For best results we need to work holistically. The whole school collaborates to create a growth mindset school culture. Together, we prepared guidelines for principals and teachers to give schools the necessary basis and material to introduce the ideas for a transformation into an overall growth mindset school culture.

The guidelines are presented in the form of a manual for schools (including teachers and management), but have been also spread to policy makers and other public authorities from the education field such as NGOs and associations.

The manual presents a growth mindset culture with:

  • professional development for teachers and principals, including articles and reflective exercises
  • guidelines for implementation of a growth mindset school culture
  • how a growth mindset, when misinterpreted, can have a negative impact on learning
  • growth mindset posters to use as inspiration for the whole school

The guidelines are general and not a collection of recipes, because every school has to find its own way for implementation. The guidelines aim to foster a holistic approach and introduce a Growth Mindset to all the key stakeholders in a school: management, teachers, students/ pupils and parents.