Many math teachers find it difficult to instill a growth mindset in their students. Students are constantly bombarded with multiple thoughts once they enter school. While math may seem like a fun subject for some, many students struggle to understand certain concepts. Students should have a growth mindset to help them relate to the subject and master it, says MyCustomWriting and a lot more educational blogs. We will be discussing this in detail.
Here are 12 ways to instill growth mindsets in students
1. Diverse Teaching Strategies
You can use different tactics and principles to teach students and then elaborate on the topic.
Feel free to use videos whenever necessary and show slides that are based on different math theories.
Use real-life examples to illustrate them. This will allow you to get the most out of your students.
Your students should be able to work together on a project or assignment that will allow them to understand the differing ideologies of other people.
You can help students understand your work by showing them different types of assignments, projects, and presentations.
Students can master any skill by expanding their teaching experience. These methods allow students to easily learn different learning styles.
2. Teach Students to Think Differently
First, we must alter the way that kids view math. Many kids believe that they will never be good at math no matter what they do.
We may be able to show them how their brain functions, which could give them hope that they will change their thinking.
Below are some activities that might help you do this:
- Show older students a clip from the life of a hardworking mathematician, or a documentary they can relate to.
- Show your younger children some interactive videos on YouTube, such as Vsauce and other related videos.
- You can take them through any free online course. These courses will teach math in a fascinating way. Research has also shown that students who have taken these courses are more optimistic about math. They also tend to be more engaged in math and perform better in math classes.
3. Open-ended Math Classes
Changing kids’ attitudes toward math is an important step, but it will not be easy.
Math is often taught as a closed subject. Children face many challenges and are taught how to solve them.
Parents and teachers should not just teach them the steps or the solutions. They need to provide rich, meaningful tasks that challenge their thinking.
Jo Boaler states that these tasks include the five C’s.
It is more productive to challenge children to reflect on what they are doing than to solve ten problems from a book.
Here are some suggested activities you could do:
- Turn problems that are familiar into challenges. Imagine that 15 children are solving the problem. This is a simple problem. Instead of asking them to simply solve the problem, ask them to find two ways to do it or to show visual proof.
- Encourage your children to solve their problems. Ask them to create a similar problem. This helps kids think differently and encourages creativity.
4. Speed is not an important factor
Students have a common misconception that math is about finding the right answers. Math is more than finding the right answer.
It improves critical thinking and problem-solving skills. There are a few studies that show math can be stressful and increase anxiety for students who have limited time.
Instead of focusing on speed focus on the process. These are some suggestions for activities:
- Students should be taught strategies and allowed to share their opinions about big ideas. You can encourage them by telling them about the top mathematicians in the world who have spent years focusing on one problem.
- Instead of focusing on the end result, let them consider the process.
5. Mindfulness in Math
Teachers must be aware of how math is perceived by them. Your example can help students learn.
Teachers and parents should change their attitudes toward math. It is possible to do this by spending time with your children and discussing open math tasks.
6. Simple Games to Improve Your Thinking
Some gamification aspects include using video game elements in your class to highlight students’ problems instead of understating them.
You can give them experience points (XP) to keep their scores in line with other video games. You can award XP for completing all problems.
Students can also participate in extracurricular activities, much like they do missions on video games.
Instead of letting them down completely, tell them they are moving up from 0XP. This is how you can successfully grow the right mindset.
7. Teach your students the importance of challenges
They can benefit from overcoming difficulties by explaining the benefits to them. This will help them develop a growth mindset.
Dweck studies have shown that middle school students who learned a lesson on facing challenges have seen an increase in their math scores over the past two years.
When people push beyond their comfort zones in order to grasp complex concepts, it is a good idea to teach about the brain’s effect.
This allows neurons in the brain to form strong connections and leads to increased intelligence over time.
The only thing that will stop you from becoming smarter is your effort and difficult path. People who think that intelligence can be fixed indefinitely are more likely to get lower grades.
This can make a big difference in the lives of students by simply teaching it.
8. Explain Why You Use Different Skills and Concepts
It may take more effort to instill a growth mindset among students. If your students have difficulty understanding its practical application, they might not see any way to improve their knowledge.
They should not just remember Pythagoras’ theorem. Instead, they should consider how they can use it in real-world situations like measuring the angle between a shadow and a lamppost down the road.
This will allow them to be more interested in the concept and make it easier for them to understand.
It becomes much easier to instill this mindset. This is achieved by engaging in experiential learning activities, using the active brain more often, and thereby putting students at the center of the learning process. It will help them gain a deeper understanding of the skills you are incorporating into them.
9. Let the student set goals
Ask students to create learning goals and then discuss the report with their classmates.
As a student, you must set goals to finish a certain topic or theory or solve some problem sums for an upcoming event.
Students must list all steps they took to accomplish this. Students should be smart and not get too busy, no matter what.
Your goal should be specific, measurable, and time-based. Students believe their skills and characteristics are fixed, so they are trying to improve.
Once they have achieved their goals, they will be able to feel confident while learning math and will realize that it is possible to grow if you put in the effort with a plan.
10. Thank Your Students For Their Hard Work
They might have difficulty solving math problems. Encourage your students to keep trying even if their efforts don’t yield any results.
They may feel helpless and incompetent. Encourage them to try and be there for them.
Encourage them to understand that the process is more important than the outcome. Giving feedback and praise can make a difference in the student’s perception of their learning.
As a math teacher, your approach can help or hinder them in establishing a growth mindset.
11. Do not compare one student with another
While competition can be a positive thing sometimes, it often affects both the winning and losing side.
A student who cannot solve a math problem and asks his friend to do it with him, creates a feeling of lower confidence.
Their friendship can be hindered, as well as having a demoralizing impact. Avoid making comparisons.
12. Make Mistakes, Celebrate Corrective Action
Not as scolding, mistakes should be seen as learning opportunities. Teachers should arrange classes in which students can discuss their mistakes with respect to a specific concept.
These sessions can help teachers get rid of fear. Students should be taught by teachers that mistakes are okay and that they can be corrected.
Do not simplify a problem to make your students more difficult or to show your abilities.
What makes a growth mindset toward math so important?
Multiple studies and research across the globe have shown that students’ understanding and liking of a concept is directly related to their perceptions.
Teachers who like it make it easier for students to understand a problem. If not, it becomes their worst nightmare. It has been shown that teaching is a key factor in math success. All of us want our students to succeed in math while learning.
Students who have a growth mindset regarding their math abilities perform better on tests and are therefore more engaged in the classroom.