The Theory of Growth Mindset

January 2019

It is risky to share an op-ed piece such as this one, especially as the principal of one of the most rigorous and academically challenging high schools in the area. However, I’ve been trying to set a “growth mindset” example for our students and our faculty, so I’m sharing Adam Grant’s piece from the December 11th New York Times, “What Straight A Students Get Wrong: If You Always Succeed in School, You’re Not Setting Yourself Up for Success in Life.” The article is bold and full of absolutes that make sweeping generalizations that are arguable. If I am to be honest, grit and resilience are the buzzwords I am hearing more and more in educational circles, not just in our growth mindset research. I find it intriguing that Mr. Grant claims that as many as 15% of job recruiters select against candidates with high GPAs. I guess this is a gentle reminder before exams that students need balance in their lives, and that the genuine learning (academically, socially, and emotionally) rather than memorization at exam time, should be the part of the high school experience that has the most value.

Growth Mindset & AHA

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