The first chapter sets the stage for thinking about the language we use with our students and just how important every word we use can be. I love the idea of shifting from the negative "I can't do this" to the more positive "I can't do this yet" with just the addition of one single word. This one word has the power to reshape the attitude of the person. While I do work hard to apply this when speaking with my students, I realized that I need to continue to work on applying it to myself. "Using this language does not come easily to me yet."
Chapter 2 explains the difference between the fixed-performance frame and the dynamic-learning frame from Carol Dweck's research and subsequent book, Mindset. People using fixed-performance frame type of thinking usually assume that ability or intelligence is fixed or you are born with skills or abilities in certain areas. Those with the dynamic-learning frame believe that ability or intelligence is always changing and is especially influenced by hard work. The language that we use with our students can put them into one frame or the other. Our goal should be to use language that moves students to the dynamic-learning frame because they will feel more control or agency over their learning and more open to doing things to that will help them learn.
In the third chapter, Peter Johnston talks about the value of change and stability. Understanding that we change as we grow and learn helps students see that they have control over what and how they learn. Stability in the form of a routine (that can be changed at times) is good because students need routine and structure so that they can be free to explore and change their thinking.
Things I Want to Remember/Practice in my Teaching
- Remind myself that "Using this language does not come easily to me yet."
- Use language that points out the ways that students are changing. "Remember how we did this at the beginning of the year...", "Have you learned a new way to solve this problem?", "Do you notice how we have increased our reading stamina?", etc.
- Use language that gives students a sense of agency or control over their own learning.
- Continue to have a regular daily routine and discuss any changes to the routine with the class before they happen.
Opening Minds ~ Schedule of Events
We would love to have you read and chat with us. The schedule for the event is:
July 11: Chapters 1-3 Hosted by Cathy Mere at Reflect and Refine: Building a Learning Community
July 18: Chapters 4-6 Hosted by me here at My Primary Passion
July 25: Chapters 7-9 Hosted by Laura Komos at Our Camp Read-A-Lot
July 26: Twitter Chat using #cyberPD - time still to be determinedHow to Participate
There are several ways to participate. You can:
- post your thoughts about each section of the book on your own blog. Then add the link to your post in the comment section of the host blog.
- simply add your thoughts as a comment on the host blog (or any of the blogs).
- share your thinking on Twitter using #cyberPD at any time during the month.
- add your thoughts and comments to Cathy's Wallwisher page on Opening Minds
- come up with your own way to participate and add to the discussion.