Sunday, December 31, 2017

If you only focus on the problem...

A friend shared this cat at Google+, and it reminded me of the Un-Think cat which you can see here: To get unstuck, you must first unthink.


If you only focus on the problem,
you might miss
the easy solution.


Saturday, December 30, 2017

Immerse yourself in a project, and create something new.

Immerse yourself in a project, and create something new.


Today's cat was inspired by this WONDERFUL video by Michael Wesch: The Sleeper.


Friday, December 29, 2017

Make notes.

An important part of developing a growth mindset is being reflective, and in order to reflective, you need to make notes so that as a learning experiment proceeds, you'll be able to look back and see what worked and what didn't work. In order to focus on the process rather than the product, you need to make notes! Then, you can look back later and reflect effectively.

For more about the power of writing, see this great blog post at Lifehacker: How Writing Makes People Smarter by David K. William
Here are the topics covered in that article:
1. Writing helps us untangle the messiness in our minds and allows for clearer thinking.
2. Writing helps us absorb information better and learn significantly more.
3. Writing helps us process negative feelings and improves our emotional intelligence.


Make notes!


Thursday, December 28, 2017

Take some time to reflect.

This is another one of Brad Esau's lovely photographs of Mrs. Bean. For more about Brad and Mrs. Bean, see this earlier post. You can see all the Mrs. Bean posts as I add them using this link: more Mrs. Bean memes.


Take some time to reflect.




Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Learning is messy.

One reason why learning is messy is that you often make mistakes in the process of learning, and another reason is that learning is often a creative process. For more about the messy minds of creative people, see this article by Scott Barry Kaufman in the Scientific American blog: Creativity Is Much More Than 10,000 Hours of Deliberate Practice. Creators are not mere experts. Instead of deliberately practicing down an already existing path, they often create their own path for others to follow.


Learning is messy.


Tuesday, December 26, 2017

You haven't failed ... you've learned.

One of the ways I get ideas for these memes is by reading the latest tweets with the #growthmindset hashtag at Twitter. I liked this tweet from Vid Micevic today! Made with cheezburger from a photo by Paula Nimigean: thank you for the great picture, Paula!


You haven't failed ... you've learned.


To write well, you must practice!

To write well, you must practice!


This cat is inspired by a quote from Sol Stein: "Ballet dancers practice technique. Pianists wear down their black and white keys with hours of daily practice. Actors rehearse and rehearse again... By practice one learns to use what one has understood. Only writers, it seems, expect to achieve some level of mastery without practice."

The creative process starts with making observations.

Today's cat was inspired by the "What Causes Creativity" graphic below:

The creative process
starts with making observations.



And here is the graphic, with a transcription here.




Use your energy to explore.

Today's cat was inspired by the creativity graphic below. Exploration is an important aspect of the creative process!

Use your energy to explore.



Here's the graphic, and you can find a transcription here.








What Causes Creativity

I saw this graphic making the rounds at G+ and thought it would be good for the growth mindset files! It comes from CreativeSomething.net. Check out their blog for more good stuff!


I've transcribed it below:

What Causes Creativity:
Confidence: ability to question without fear
Observation: seeing problems/ideas
Humility: knowing you don't know everything
Mindfulness: thinking on how to think
Curiosity: exploring and experimenting
Resourcefulness: something to tinker with
Energy: to explore and tinker
Action: not just thinking, but doing

Assess yourself; then learn.

This cat is inspired by a quote from Carol Dweck's Mindset: "you need accurate information about your current abilities in order to learn effectively."

The image is from cheezburger.

Assess yourself; then learn.


Use your brain: be logical and experiment!

This is the eighth in a series of cats to illustrate Howard Gardner's theory of "multiple intelligences," which is a very important concept for growth mindset: you can grow ALL those intelligences... just use your brain! You can find out more at Wikipedia or by consulting the infographic and video at the bottom of this post. This is another one of the cats from the logical-mathematical domain:


Use your brain: be logical and experiment!


Image is at cheezburger.


Both the infographic and video are by Marek Bennett:


Monday, December 25, 2017

It takes work to build a masterpiece.

This cat was inspired by Josh Birdwell's blog post/poem: Tools - Day 5 of 100. Here is the complete stanza:

It will take work to build a master piece
Be aware of the resources
And the tools that come along in life
Do not miss out on the opportunity
To make something awesome
Go get your hands dirty

For another post inspired by this same blog post, see Tools are essential.

It takes work to build a masterpiece.




Have a goal when you practice.

This blog post is one of several inspired by a Chris Hildrew blog post: Growth Mindset Misconceptions and Missteps, and here are some more cats inspired by that same post.


Have a goal when you practice.



A New Theory of Human Intelligence

Scott Barry Kaufman (learn more at Wikipedia) is the co-author of a great book: Wired to Create: Unraveling the Mysteries of the Creative Mind. I can highly recommend that book!

Here is his TED talk on A New Theory of Human Intelligence:









I know I can do it.

For more growth mindset ideas, see the slideshow: From Mindset: The Psychology of Learning and Achievement by Emily Magruder.


I know I can do it.




Here is the specific slide that inspired this item:




Sunday, December 24, 2017

Confront your fears.

Fear is sometimes a big obstacle to growth. Try to confront your fears. If you need help confronting something you are afraid of, talk about it with your a friend or a family member or your teacher. Sometimes just by confronting your fear, it becomes less scary!

Confront your fears.


If you are a fan of Harry Potter, you might recall the great scene in which Professor Lupin teaches the students to use a "riddikulus" spell to confront their fears:

Friday, December 22, 2017

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Enjoy the effort and keep on learning!

I got the idea for this LOLCat when I saw a quote graphic at Twitter:
If parents want to give their children a gift, the best thing they can do is to teach their children to love challenges, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning. That way, their children don't have to be slaves of praise. They will have a lifelong way to build and repair their own confidence.
— Carol Dweck



Enjoy the effort
and keep on learning!




Success doesn't come easy.

This blog post is one of several inspired by a Chris Hildrew blog post: Growth Mindset Misconceptions and Missteps. It's not easy rolling that watermelon: real or metaphorical!

Here are some more cats inspired by that same post!

Success doesn't come easy.



Carol Dweck. Brain Research at Stanford: Mindsets

This is an older talk by Carol Dweck, which provides a snapshot of her research back in 2011. I really like her closing comments:
I'd like to end by saying every era is known by the way it views its children's intelligence. I grew up in an era that believed in fixed intelligence. In fact my sixth grade teacher Mrs. Wilson seated us around the room in IQ order; you think it's funny, but in fact in her view some children had potential and some did not. The ones who did not in her view were not allowed to clap the erasers, wash the blackboard, carry the flag in the assembly, or take a note to the principal. What will our era be known for? I hope we'll be known for understanding the brain and how it works and then using that knowledge to help all children fulfill their potential.






Sprouts: Growth Mindset animation

If you like animation-style videos, you will enjoy this overview of mindsets that comes to you from the Sprouts Learning channel at YouTube.





Try Everything

Shakira's Try Everything song has some great growth mindset advice! I've pasted in the lyrics below from genius.com.



[Intro]
Oh oh oh oh oooh
Oh oh oh oh oooh
Oh oh oh oh oooh
Oh oh oh oh oooh

[Verse 1]
I messed up tonight, I lost another fight
I still mess up but I'll just start again
I keep falling down, I keep on hitting the ground
I always get up now to see what's next

[Pre-Chorus]
Birds don't just fly, they fall down and get up
Nobody learns without getting it wrong

[Chorus]
I won't give up, no I won't give in
Til I reach the end and then I'll start again
No I won't leave, I wanna try everything
I wanna try even though I could fail
I won't give up, no I won't give in
Til I reach the end and then I'll start again
No I won't leave, I wanna try everything
I wanna try even though I could fail

[Post-Chorus]
Oh oh oh oh oooh
Try everything
Oh oh oh oh oooh
Try everything
Oh oh oh oh oooh
Try everything
Oh oh oh oh oooh

[Verse 2]
Look at how far you've come, you filled your heart with love
Baby you've done enough, take a deep breath
Don't beat yourself up, don't need to run so fast
Sometimes we come last, but we did our best

[Chorus]
I won't give up, no I won't give in
Til I reach the end and then I'll start again
No I won't leave, I wanna try everything
I wanna try even though I could fail
I won't give up, no I won't give in
Til I reach the end and then I'll start again
No I won't leave, I wanna try everything
I wanna try even though I could fail

[Bridge]
I'll keep on making those new mistakes
I'll keep on making them every day
Those new mistakes


Marshall Goldsmith: Feedforward

You may have already encountered Marshall Goldsmith's term "feedfoward" (which I really like!), and this video is a great overview of his feedforward process, which is something that can be helpful not just in school but also at work and for life in general: Feedforward — Coaching for Behavioral Change.






Because I practice, I do better.

This blog post is one of several inspired by a Chris Hildrew blog post: Growth Mindset Misconceptions and Missteps. And here are some more cats inspired by that same post.

Because I practice, I do better.



Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Dream big... and dare to fail


Dream big... and dare to fail.




At Twitter I found this nice motivational poster,


which I then made into a cat with cheezburger.

It's a cha-cha.


Having to take a step backward is not a disaster; it's a cha-cha.


Today's meme was inspired by a graphic from my friend Jose Vega at Google+ yesterday:

Optimist:
Someone who figures that
taking a step backward
after taking a step forward
is not a disaster; it's a cha-cha. — Robert Brault


I knew right away what cat at cheezburger I could use, but of course I had to adapt the quote.  

I will train my brain by reading books.

Growth mindset is very much about "training your brain," which is a phrase I found at the infographic below; it has some good suggestions for coaching yourself for a growth mindset!

I will train my brain by reading books.



Change your words... CHANGE YOUR MINDSET: transcription here.


Change your words... CHANGE YOUR MINDSET.

I really like this graphic by K. Morales:


I'm not good at this. -> What am I missing?
I'm awesome at this! -> I'm on the right track.
I give up. -> I'll use some of the strategies I've learned.
This is too hard. -> This may take some time and effort.
I can't make this any better. -> I can always improve; I'll keep trying!
I can't do math. -> I'm going to train my brain in math.
I made a mistake. -> Mistakes help me improve.
It's good enough. -> Is this really my best work?
I'll never be as smart as them. -> I'm going to figure out what they do and try it.





Curiosity: the will to explore.


Here is the quote: “Curiosity’s most distinguishing characteristic is its open willingness to explore….” 

Curiosity: the will to explore.



Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Learn what triggers your fears

Today's cat was inspired by an infographic about managing your negative thoughts. You can disrupt your fear by thinking about it, and analyzing what triggers your negative thoughts:

Learn what triggers your fears.



Here is a transcript: How to Manage Negative Thoughts.






Tools are essential.

This cat was inspired by Josh Birdwell's blog post/poem: Tools - Day 5 of 100. Here is the complete stanza, and for another post inspired by this same blog post, see It takes work to build a masterpiece.

Countless objects are around
That alone are useless
But together can build
Something worth while
Tools are essential
In the building process
Because they give you leverage and
Help fit together the objects

Tools are essential.




We do things better together.

I started with this great graphic about New Land Academy and its "rhythms" (see below), and I picked out this one in particular:

We do things better together.






The more you learn, the more places you'll go.


The more you learn, the more places you'll go.



I used this graphic to inspire my cat for today:





Question everything.

One of the most important ingredients in a growth mindset is curiosity. So, here's a good piece of advice: Question everything! That is how you will satisfy your curiosity.

... Is that one very long wind-around mouse? ... Or is it two mouses?

The image comes from cheezburger.


The Latest Cats

How to Manage Negative Thoughts

This is a very useful infographic that I found online at Twitter, but I do not have any idea as to the author. If anybody has information about that, let me know!



How to Manage Negative Thoughts

Challenge Your Thoughts:
What is the best thing that could happen?
What is the most likely thing that will happen?
What is the worst thing that could happen?

Check for Evidence:
What is the evidence for my thinking?
What is the evidence against my thinking?
How can I find out if my thoughts are true?

Write down your negative thoughts.
Put things into perspective.
Identify your automatic thoughts.
Distract yourself.
Learn what triggers your negative thoughts.
Learn to forgive yourself.

Instead of thinking... Try thinking...
I am not good enough -> I am good enough.
I can't do it -> I can do it.
Why does this always happen to me? -> This is just one bad day.
Everything is always my fault. -> I can't blame myself for everything.
I always fail. -> I will learn from this failure.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Study hard, and then take a break.

Getting lots of practice is important, but you cannot study non-stop. Learn to pace yourself!


Study hard, and then take a break.

Three Simple Frameworks for Feedback

Be sure to read the great article that explains these three strategies in detail: Three Simple Frameworks for Feedback by Melanie Kong.



Plus (+) / Delta (Δ). Pluses are positive things to keep or repeat, while deltas are changes to make in the future.


I like…, I wish…, What if… Starting your likes and wishes with the word “I…” helps frame your feedback as personal observations and opinions, which in turn makes the feedback easier to accept by the feedback recipient.


Strengths, Weaknesses, Questions, Ideas (SWQI). Organize your feedback into these four quadrants: Strengths, Weaknesses, Questions, and Ideas.