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This is a post from Karen Grose's blog about Growth Mindset.  To see more amazing ideas and activities - register for a free account!

 

 

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We should all be teaching growth mindset principles. There are so many resources to bring this into your classroom. How do you teach a growth mindset? Here are my favorite resources. Please share yours in the comments.

 

Teaching Growth Mindset

  1. Show Carol Dweck’s TED Talk on Growth Mindset
  2. Show Students Sylvia Duckworth’s 10 Growth Mindsets Sketchnotes (above)
  3. Discuss the different statements.
  4. Come up with a fun way to “catch” people saying growth mindset statements.

 

 

START SAYING THE RIGHT THINGS. OK, don’t ever ever say “you are so smart,” instead, use one of these statements below. It is what you DO. Being smart implies that is what you are. Instead, we want students doing smart things, behaving in wise ways. Here are some growth mindset statements, I use. Please share yours.

  • You worked really hard on that.
  • I’m so proud of your progress!
  • You kept going, even when it is hard.
  • You have a tenacious attitude; I’m so proud that you never quit. And look at you, YOU DID IT!
  • You are unstoppable. Even when you struggle, you keep going.
  • You work well with other students. I like how you _____ (include everyone, listen to everyone, really worked hard to help everyone be part of the process — a true compliment.)
  • Wow! I can always count on you to come prepared to class.
  • (do this privately) I’m so proud of you for helping ____ with their assignment.
  • You really did ___ well because.
  • You know, I appreciate how I can trust you to tell me the truth. We can work through this together.
  • I can tell that you gave everything you had to this project. I’m so proud of how hard you worked.
  • You thought of a great idea. Wow.
  • Oh, I’m so proud that you remembered to do ____. You’re making amazing progress.
  • You know, that was a fascinating way to solve that problem. It showed real creativity. I’m proud of you.
  • Oh yeah! High five! You did it! (Or knuckle punch or fist pump – I do not ever, however, do a chest bump. Not happening.
  • Fantastic! That is so awesome.

 

We are teaching growth mindset every day. Sometimes we’re teaching a fixed mindset. We can do better. Just talking about a growth mindset early in the school year will help students get on track to learn. You can do this!

 

Thank you, Sylvia, for such a fantastic sketch note and for sharing them with all of us.

 

Remember that when students believe that their actions can make changes, they’ll often choose to do them. But if they think their talents are fixed and set in stone, they often will quit. Teaching growth mindset is important to help students reach their full potential. Now, that is something that is really smart.

 

For original source: Teaching Growth Mindset with @sylviaduckworth Sketchnote

Angela De Palma

Posted Mar 1, 2015

 

 

17025693-twitter-logo-in-a-mosaic-of-little-squares.jpgProfessional learning community, collaborative learning community, professional learning group, communities of practice.  Different terms, same idea – teachers coming together to learn and develop their practice. The October 2007 edition of the Ministry of Education of Ontario’s excellent Capacity Building Series  from the Literacy and Numeracy Secretariat includes a quote from Judith Little as a means of clarifying what would have been a relatively new proposal:  “Improved student learning and teaching result when teachers collaboratively focus on achievement and assessment, questioning practice, and supporting professional growth.”  The monograph recommends a specific model for Ontario schools as part of its School Effectiveness Framework, encouraging the practice as a school-based activity.

 

More than seven years later, I wonder if a subsequent monograph might be composed slightly differently.  I question this because of my decision (and encouragement from– thanks @rainebo) to dip my toes into the world of hashtags and characters in the 140 range – Twitter. Admittedly still very green in the Twittersphere, I am humbled by and impressed with the amount of professional learning readily available and easily accessible on the social networking service. Homework debate?  Input from teachers, parents and students for your consideration.  Coding for kindergarten students? Guidelines offered.  Next steps to take following a reading diagnostic? Webinar scheduled.  You get the idea. Can a PLC of 2015 include TLCs, Twitter Learning Communities?  I dare you to say no.

 

If like many Ontarians, you were avoiding consistent temperatures with the dash before the digit, your indoor activity this past weekend may have included reading the March issue (currently the Dec 2014 is still the most recent posted online) of Professionally Speaking, which contains a feature about two Ottawa-based teachers hosting monthly chats on a range of education topics (p. 22).  Perhaps you were too busy following @ONedchat? Or maybe you also read about Toronto teachers who hosted a hackathon for high school students (p. 52).  Want to know more?  Try following them on Twitter.  Not quite ready?  These resources from OTF and Edudemic can help you embark on your own #TLC.

 

123RF Royalty Free Stock Photos

Derrick Schellenberg

Posted Jan 17, 2015

 

I may come back and post some more thoughts (and even something beyond mere text) but I wanted to share my initial response first:

 

1. Effective teaching is... personal and personalized, a product of effective learning, a willingness to help others, engaging, thoughtful, and timely, passionate, planned and flexible, designed around time frames (a period, a semester, a school year) while being simultaneously spontaneous, collaborative, the act of communicating clearly, ambitious and daunting, autonomous and ongoing, cyclical and without end.

 

2. The best teaching experience I have had... is when students teach each other.  The unit and the lessons have been designed to enable a gradual release of responsibility, the students inquire into their own areas of interest, they create the questions and construct the answers; with a little help from their teacher or their peers they navigate the challenges in the process, they piece together meaning in their final project, reflecting on how they conducted themselves during the journey, they share their work with each other, receive immediate feedback in the form of questions and comments from classmates, and I disappear into the background to enjoy their experiences, learning what they have decided to teach me.

 

3. The best learning experience I had... was also the worst teaching experience I had.  Teachers' college courses had been completed and I was in my second placement, both of which were two straight months in length, and I was teaching a Grade Twelve University English class in a school that I loved, with students I liked, for a department that I admired, in front of a teacher and department head who I consider one of my greatest mentors in teaching (and life).

 

I was teaching a poem.  I'm not sure but I think it was "Prometheus" by Lord Byron, where Prometheus steals fire from Zeus to give to man, and is tortured for years, a punishment that Prometheus had foreseen and knowingly accepted, in his desire to sacrifice himself for the good of humanity. Well, I had no idea what the poem was about (at the time; I have since come to love that poem about destiny and choice), I floundered through a pathetic analysis of the text, and was rightly ripped to shreds by my supervisor after the students had been dismissed, so much so that I wasn't sure I would be coming back.

 

This failed attempt at a lesson taught me about planning and preparation, knowing my subject area, being brave enough to ask questions and admit my own ignorance, and to set high standards for myself, as well as many more lessons too numerous to list here.  My father used to call our discussions on the drive home after Saturday morning hockey a time to share "constructive criticism" and it wasn't until I was much older that I realized the value of feedback and reflection.

 

I know things are shifting toward health and mental well-being, and this is a good thing, but I believe that we have to be strong enough to be honest with each other, we have to have high expectations of ourselves and others, and we have to be resilient enough to receive constructive criticism, even when it is harsh, and to respond to it by making changes when and where necessary in what we do.  The criticism that stays with me the most is the criticism that I agree with.  In my heart I know that there is a degree of truth and I have to accept it, acknowledge it and try to change it if I can. Having high expectations of each other, of our learners, and of ourselves is important and it helps us to keep reaching for whatever lies ahead. 

 

To read the complete thread, join TeachOntario and click here.

Louise Robitaille

Posted Feb 20, 2015

 

My colleague Peter Douglas and I have had the opportunity to be “Teacher Learning and Leadership Program” (TLLP) participants. This amazing program created and supported our professional learning development. It provided us time to explore and learn about effective approaches to teaching and learning. It also gave us a chance to take a leadership role in sharing our expertise, with the inquiry-based approach to teaching across the province and truthfully around the world.

 

As our knowledge and understanding grew from this PD opportunity, we were able to build a website, use twitter, start a blog, participate in curriculum projects with the MoE, give workshops and share our classroom with fellow educators.

 

As professionals, and learners we were able to grow in our understanding of how students learn. Our students are motivated and engaged, unlike any other time in our teaching career. The passion and joy we have for teaching is because of the personal growth that happened while participating in the TLLP.

teachontario.team

Free Vaccinations

Posted by teachontario.team Sep 1, 2015

Example Student Essay

By Nan Zhong

 

In article 24 of the UN charter of children rights, it states that children have the right to good quality health care. My name is Nan and I’m from Canada, a place where vaccines are free and also available in schools. From this project called "lot" I have learned greatly about children in danger everywhere, whether it be poor and starving, uneducated, or in war zones. I propose another right based on article 24 and that is to let children get free vaccinations. In countries such as Syria, Chad, and Pakistan, outbreaks of polio are affecting thousands as war is preventing them from giving vaccinations.

 

Children everywhere, especially in countries associated with wars, are denied access of vaccinations when they would require it due to conflicts. I propose the countries with outbreaks of diseases will at least allow children to get the medical attention they need, even with the difficulties of war. Vaccines are needed for the survival and living of these children, it is a necessary excuse to temporarily stop war. Many children all around the world die because certain casualties are preventing them from getting vaccinated. We need to put a stop to this, for children and families affected everywhere.

 

Even with the available use of vaccines in countries, the cost is another story. All children should receive free vaccines when needed because they shouldn’t have think about the worries of providing money. The problem is that new vaccinations will be released; the poorer countries will not be able to afford these costs. The children in that particular country will not be able to use the vaccines they need, therefore the vaccinations for children should be free. As a child, you would never be asked to pay for something you needed because your parents did, so why should other children around world?

Children are the future, so they should not be in the way of harm whatsoever. That includes all children worldwide, not just in developed countries. More than thousands of children are dying each day, but these are preventable deaths. The preventable deaths include the water sanitation, vaccinations and food. Children’s immune systems are weaker than an adult, which means they are likely to break down faster if they got a disease compared to adults. This is why we are so precious and fragile, a child without care is not a happy child.

 

To wrap up my proposal, I strongly encourage this new right that all children should have to right to free vaccinations. Many things such as wars and famines are preventing this as I stated before, but we can find a way that works out for everyone. Hold clinics around the places in need of vaccines and make it a war free zone so no more harm can be done to children. The future needs to survive, that means children need to survive.

 

To read the rest of this post, join TeachOntario and click this link.

Joan Sweeney

 

Posted Jan 25, 2015

 

1. Effective Teaching is:

 

Keeping me in the learning seat alongside the students.  Many years ago, I was not a strong student and if you had asked me, I would have always referred to myself as 'not lucky enough' to get high marks.  Coming to learning and education later in life, I celebrate today the learning insights that continue to challenge the previous models of education.   Mistakes are signs that I am missing something important and that it is not because I am stupid or not intelligent.  This is the best gift I can give my students - helping them to see mistakes as an opportunity to change their strategy to learn, or perhaps their motivation.  Perseverance to 'get' a concept is what is needed and in this area, I see a great deal of weakness with my core students.  This is REALLY hard when you were shaped by a different mentality and the resistance to this principal of mistake making today is still very strong.

 

 

2. The best teaching experience I have had:

 

When my class connected with a colleague in Oaxaca, Mexico over the last three years and this has been some of the richest and most interesting work in my 15 years.  I was fortunate to go to Oaxaca for one week to visit the school and experience classes and learning in the heart of Mexico.  This began a lasting learning relationship between our two schools with many letters, emails, shared google doc assignments, and live Google Hangouts where we discuss many different topics about life in Mexico and Canada.

 

My students this year are preparing to welcome for the second time a group of students travelling here to Canada and which continues the online learning we have done about each other's history, culture, dance, language and community.  We are also involved in this amazing global project called Adobe Youth Voices that provides so many resources and opportunities to share and connect with students from around the globe. (For more resources - see the link below... it is all FREE!)

 

Adobe Youth Voices

 

Here is the video we produced (and won an award for) in 2013.  Students made this together during their visit and co-planned and filmed it. (Students signed Global release permission forms so that there are no privacy violations).

 

3. The worst teaching moments.... are when the students and I are not listening to each other.

 

To read the entire thread, join TeachOntario and click here.

Gabriel Ayyavoo

Posted on Apr 10, 2015

 

1. What Apps are you comfortable using? The responses were interesting to the types of Apps students were comfortable with.

 

An overwhelming result of 87% of the Science students were using Prezi and equally 89% were using Edmodo comfortably. The initial results indicate that students come into the senior courses with an ability to use Apps. Apparently, the focus has been the use of Apps for school work. Despite teenagers tendency listen to music, it seems that 21% tend to use this App to relax. The need to use technology for school task or assignment is a priority.chart.png

 

2. Below is a list of 4 skills. Of the four, choose one (1) that you think is your strongest skill.

 

The following results indicate science students’ perception on skills.

 

These senior science students felt that collaboration is ranked the strongest skill. The senior students having been in the school for at least three years clearly depicted that communication were ranked average. By Communications, students understood its definition to being able to share ideas and feelings clearly. Yet Senior Science students’ being competitive tends to be private about their work. This is predicative from this initial survey where students tend to keep their feelings to themselves.

 

3.     When asked about choosing the skills that they found to be most challenging in terms of communication, critical thinking, collaboration and creativity. The results are shown here:

Within the science courses, students found critical thinking to be one that needed most support. By these they are looking at the need to solve problems. Communication is still an average issue for these students.

 

4. The next question is: What are the challenge(s) that you have faced when working in groups?

 

Some of the challenges include unequal distribution of work load from within the group, lack of skills in a particular activity and availability for meetings. These were some of the repeating comments that posed challenges for senior students working in group settings. The next question is to overcome the challenges.chart (1).png

 

5. How have you overcome the challenge(s) you've faced in working in groups.

 

A number of strategies were suggested by students.  These included: being confident, the students were able to overcome these challenges. By confident, the students felt that they could discuss and spread the work evenly. By being optimistic and open minded as one student mentions, certainly such an attitude supports students building a character to support group learning. The final question includes the feeling of tech use in classroom.

 

6. How do you feel about using technology (i.e. iPad, cell phone, computer) to help you learn in your science class?

They are comfortable using Edmodo and PowerPoint, in their classes as well

They felt learning was made easier as the technology was beneficial. It was used to obtain pictures, definitions that they had no understanding for and it especially was useful in learning difficult concepts.

To see the full comment thread, join TeachOntario and click here.

teachontario.team

Growth Mindset

Posted by teachontario.team Sep 1, 2015

Colleen Rose

Posted Nov 15, 2014

 

Today I had a discussion (or two) with my students regarding growth mindset and how it can impact their success.  Have you talked about growth mindset with your students?  What are these experiences like?    #YouCanLearnAnything | Northern Art Teacher

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Ben Babcock

Posted on Mar 24, 2015

 

One of the big news items in education this week is, of course, how Finland is phasing "subjects" out in favour of "topic" teaching. I find this interesting for a very personal reason: I am a math and English teacher—and not math or English, or math with a little bit of English (or vice versa). I love both subjects, love teaching both subjects, and want to teach both as often and as concurrently as possible. When people hear about my teachables, they typically comment on how the combination is unusual because these subjects are so different (which they are not, but that's a discussion for another day…). This perspective indicates how deeply embedded the idea of subject teaching is in our society. I find this unfortunate, because real life doesn't work that way. Something I'm realizing as I consider how best to make lessons more engaging and more relevant to 21st century learners is that, increasingly, we need to break out of that subject box. Otherwise the learning is too artificial to be meaningful in a world where knowledge is a click away but skills remain elusive.pentametron_example.png

 

The other thing I love is when I see someone doing something with technology that is creative or unexpected. Twitter is great for communication. But it has also spawned entire subcultures of phenomena, from serialized novels to choose your own adventure stories. And there are bots. Sooooo many bots. Most of them are just annoying spammers that follow you when you tweet a certain keyword. Some are clever creations of brilliant minds.

 

Yesterday I came across one of the latter: @Pentametron is a Twitter bot that retweets pairs of tweets that, together, make a couplet in iambic pentameter.

 

My first reaction was, “Oh, this is neat.” Another Internet curiosity in a world where we can see several such curiosities a day. I will share it, then I will probably forget about it.

 

Then it dawned on me what an actual feat this was, and how doing this required a knowledge both of computer science and English. (The creator is actually an artist for whom this type of "inadvertent" sound art is an interest.)

 

First and foremost, obviously, one has to understand what iambic pentameter is. Then one has to figure out how to express this in language a computer is going to understand. One has to create an algorithm that takes random tweets, counts their syllables, and then pairs tweets with the correct number of syllables in such a way that their last words rhyme in English. I don't know if there are any other checks (e.g., if it understands stresses on syllables).

 

This was just a reminder for me that I can't get too comfortable when using technology and things like Twitter in the classroom. Yes, Twitter is a communication tool and great when leveraged as such—but it's also a platform that can do so much more when you let loose with a little creativity. I'm not a computer science teacher, but I would love to be in a computer science class where a culminating activity was “create a Twitter bot that does a cool thing.” This fulfills the need for students to demonstrate they have skills and can meet expectations, but it also opens the door for them to express their own particular interests, whether that’s iambic pentameter, science, soccer, movies, etc. And because the project is open-ended, it means students have the potential to surprise with their creation. Why not give them an opportunity to dazzle, instead of just showing they know how to make an algorithm?

 

Going forward, when I'm designing activities that rely on using a particular technology, I'm going to try hard to think if I've considered emergent or unusual twists we can put on the technology. Is "create a Twitter account for a character" really the best I can do, or is there something more creative we can manage? Or can I open the task up a bit more to give students the space they need to surprise me? Can I create an environment in which students can Do New Things, things I don't necessarily expect? I know the idea of an open-ended task that encourages creativity is nothing new. However, it's vital that when we pair such tasks with technology, we don't get stuck "inside the box" in terms of what we expect a technology to do. Sometimes there are hidden layers, just waiting for a motivated or engaged student to discover when we—or they—least expect it.

 

I also want to use technology to break down those barriers we inadvertently erect between subjects. As with open-ended projects, this is not something inherently new with using technology. However, technology creates more opportunities to do so. A Twitter bot could be a computer science program that happens to allow students to express English, math, science skills. But we could turn it around, have students use Twitter or Tumblr or Wordpress in service of a specific English task, all the while letting their computer and art and design skills flourish as well. To some extent this happens already whenever we use these technologies in our lessons—but I think we need to consider these cross-curricular connections more explicitly. By doing so, we can make more conscious tweaks to our activities to emphasize certain cross-curricular connections that might be the most fruitful or beneficial for our learners.

 

This is, to me, the most potent and mind-blowing thing about using technology in 21st-century teaching—not all the exciting things I know technology can do (and I'm tech savvy, so I have a lot of pre-conceptions); it's discovering, often through students, all the things I never knew technology could do. And hopefully along the way, we can help encourage and empower them to continue such discoveries when they leave school.

 

To read the full discussion join TeachOntario and click on this link.

Derrick Schellenberg

York Region DSB

Posted on Jan 17, 2015

 

I may come back and post some more thoughts (and even something beyond mere text) but I wanted to share my initial response first:

 

1. Effective teaching is... personal and personalized, a product of effective learning, a willingness to help others, engaging, thoughtful, and timely, passionate, planned and flexible, designed around time frames (a period, a semester, a school year) while being simultaneously spontaneous, collaborative, the act of communicating clearly, ambitious and daunting, autonomous and ongoing, cyclical and without end.

 

2. The best teaching experience I have had... is when students teach each other.  The unit and the lessons have been designed to enable a gradual release of responsibility, the students inquire into their own areas of interest, they create the questions and construct the answers; with a little help from their teacher or their peers they navigate the challenges in the process, they piece together meaning in their final project, reflecting on how they conducted themselves during the journey, they share their work with each other, receive immediate feedback in the form of questions and comments from classmates, and I disappear into the background to enjoy their experiences, learning what they have decided to teach me.

 

3. The best learning experience I had... was also the worst teaching experience I had.  Teachers' college courses had been completed and I was in my second placement, both of which were two straight months in length, and I was teaching a Grade Twelve University English class in a school that I loved, with students I liked, for a department that I admired, in front of a teacher and department head who I consider one of my greatest mentors in teaching (and life).

 

I was teaching a poem.  I'm not sure but I think it was "Prometheus" by Lord Byron, where Prometheus steals fire from Zeus to give to man, and is tortured for years, a punishment that Prometheus had foreseen and knowingly accepted, in his desire to sacrifice himself for the good of humanity. Well, I had no idea what the poem was about (at the time; I have since come to love that poem about destiny and choice), I floundered through a pathetic analysis of the text, and was rightly ripped to shreds by my supervisor after the students had been dismissed, so much so that I wasn't sure I would be coming back.

 

This failed attempt at a lesson taught me about planning and preparation, knowing my subject area, being brave enough to ask questions and admit my own ignorance, and to set high standards for myself, as well as many more lessons too numerous to list here.  My father used to call our discussions on the drive home after Saturday morning hockey a time to share "constructive criticism" and it wasn't until I was much older that I realized the value of feedback and reflection.

 

I know things are shifting toward health and mental well-being, and this is a good thing, but I believe that we have to be strong enough to be honest with each other, we have to have high expectations of ourselves and others, and we have to be resilient enough to receive constructive criticism, even when it is harsh, and to respond to it by making changes when and where necessary in what we do.  The criticism that stays with me the most is the criticism that I agree with.  In my heart I know that there is a degree of truth and I have to accept it, acknowledge it and try to change it if I can. Having high expectations of each other, of our learners, and of ourselves is important and it helps us to keep reaching for whatever lies ahead. 

 

To read the full discussion join TeachOntario and click on this link.

Megan Ramsay

 

Feb 9, 2015 (in response to Community Manager Albert)

 

Equity to me is how I think about and interact with my students versus what I do in my classroom.  For me it is a mindset, a way of thinking about diversity and respecting identity.  Equity initiatives are wonderful and there are many out there that are worthwhile implementing such as the Positive Space Room for grade 7 & 8’s that opened last year in the school I teach at.  This space is reserved for students to come, feel safe, be themselves, learn about each other and explore not one model of family or friendship but many.   This project was born from the strong foundational belief that students and educators together want to genuinely show interest in celebrating, dialoguing and learning about each other.

 

Students see the world through a lens that is influenced by their experiences and their cultural identity.  As an educator I can support equity through emergent learning, co-created learning and themes that touch us all.   By creating a culture and climate of tolerance and acceptance together with my students equity evolves and becomes the norm.  It is at this point that we come together as a community of unique learners who support each other. Equity to me is more than the newest initiative but rather it is about how each student perceives the way their teacher and their peers value their voice and give it room to be expressed, understood, to grow and to be prized in the classroom.

 

To read the full discussion join TeachOntario and click on this link.

 

deep_learning_400x300.jpgSarah Michaelis

Nov 3, 2014

 

In an interview with Michael Fullan on the New Pedagogies for Deep Learning Project: "We need to shift from superficial homage to 21st century skills to implementing learning goals relevant to the new era," he says. Because "students find schooling increasingly boring as they proceed across the grades. Studies from many countries show that among high school students less than 40% of upper secondary students are intellectually engaged (Jenkins, 2013; Willms et al., 2009). And, not unrelated, signs of teacher frustration are growing. For example, in the U.S the percentage of teachers who are satisfied with teaching has plummeted from 65% to 38% from 2008 to 2012. Teachers and students are psychologically if not literally being pushed out of school."

The solution? A global whole system reform to achieve deep learning. "Any learning solution that could achieve deep learning would have to do four things: it would need to be irresistibly engaging for both students and teachers, it would have to be elegantly efficient and easy to access and use, technology would be ubiquitous 24/7 and it would be steeped in real-life problem solving." Thoughts?

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