Blog 3 – Student Engagement

How would the other authors/speakers agree or disagree with Carol Dweck’s concept of “Mindset”? Discuss two ways that you can incorporate a “growth mindset” in your instruction for your students.

What type of mindset do you have?

Before you can impact the mindset of the students in your charge, you must first know understand the type of mindset you have.

What type of mindset do you have? Before you can impact the mindset of the students in your charge, you must first know understand the type of mindset you have.

Click on the link below to determine your mindset (Mindset, 2016).

Test Your Mindset

I recently finished up a 3-year grant project with the PIMSER group from the University of Kentucky. The first session discussed the concept of growth mindset and I heard the name ‘Carol Dweck’ thrown around as if the cadre knew her personally. I had never heard of Carol Dweck or her model of growth and fixed mindset. After the session ended, I was intrigued and did some research on my own. During my internet searching, I stumbled across the Test Your Mindset online assessment and started answering the questions. The results placed me on the growth mindset side of the spectrum but I had 3 answers that were in the fixed mindset category.  

The first way I incorporate a growth mindset into the S.H.I.E.L.D. Training Center occurs on Training Day 1. We discuss our first rule and mathematical standard, “NEVER GIVE UP. NEVER SURRENDER!” We discuss failure as a part of learning. We discuss the famous failures throughout history and try to find out how they went from failure to phenomenal. I show the video posted on YouTube by Trevor Regan, “Carol Dweck – A Study on Praise and Mindsets” (click link to view) (S., 2014) to stimulate the conversation. And then the real work begins.

The second way I incorporate growth mindset into the S.H.I.E.L.D. Training center is a test. At the beginning of their 6th-grade year, the RECRUITS take the Test Your Mindset online assessment. When the receive the results at the end, we discuss the two types of mindsets and the reasons they may have obtained the results. The vast majority of my students have a fixed mindset. The general consensus is that students in Mr. Shultz’s class are the lowest of the low and basically… they are dumb. The students hear it in the hallways, sometimes at home and they believe it. They are accustomed to failure and believe they are incapable of learning.

I have a unique classroom and I get to keep the same students for 3 years in a row. When the students come in for their second year, (yes they get the same speech again!) they no longer feel like complete failures because their hard work has paid dividends. By the third year, (my very first class of sixth graders are now eighth graders) the students almost feel as if they can conquer the world. Their scores have gone up substantially in a short period of time. They are passing the same math class as the other students who they once perceived as being smarter… and it’s not because I am an exceptional teacher. It’s because they have changed their mindset from fixed to growth.

All sources provided demonstrate a variation of Dweck’s model of growth mindset. I have to say the video of Taylor Mali discussing What Teachers Make is one of the greatest videos I have seen. Every time I watch it, I am more motivated to push my students to their limits. My favorite line comes early in his presentation, “I make students work harder than they ever thought they could…” (Mali, 2012). I may be tempted to show the students this video in the future… The clean version of course!

How would the authors of RWLF and Sugata Mitra agree on Prensky’s concept of “partnering”?

In my opinion, the authors of Real-World Learning Framework for Secondary Schools (RWLF) and Sugata Mitra would concur with Prensky’s concept of “partnering”. Sugata Mitra (2010) discusses the importance of using student partners or peer partnerships to find the solution to a presented problem as opposed to working alone. Together students are engaged and can overcome obstacles using problem-solving techniques with little to no teacher involvement. Prensky seems to agree with the method of teachers monitoring student work and allowing the students to have more control of their learning environment, similar to project-based learning. All three authors seem to agree that when students are engaged, they begin to take control of their educations.



MINDSET. (n.d.). Retrieved October 16, 2016, from, January 30). Carol Dweck – A Study on Praise and Mindsets. Retrieved October 16, 2016, from

Mali, T. (n.d.). Taylor Mali: What teachers make. [Video file]. Retrieved from (3:23; clean version) (The not-as-clean version:


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