How to Promote Growth Mindset


December 10, 2019

By: Kelsey Coaldrake, M.A. CCC-SLP

At Enrichment Therapy and Learning Center, in our classroom and therapy rooms, we promote a growth mindset. Growth mindset is a term coined by Dr. Carol S. Dweck, in her research on children’s attitudes towards failure, as well as overarching beliefs regarding learning and intelligence. 

What is Growth Mindset?

Growth mindset is the belief that abilities and intelligence can change and grow. It is the idea that we are not innately intelligent, but are able to develop intelligence and abilities over time. A growth mindset is the mindset that we can do hard things. It promotes a desire to learn, allows us to embrace challenges, helps us persist following failure, and encourages us to learn from criticism.

What is Fixed Mindset?

Fixed mindset is the belief that abilities and intelligence are static and cannot be changed. It is the idea that we are innately intelligent, and do not develop intelligence or abilities. This type of mindset may result in an avoidance of challenges, a fear of failure, difficulty responding to criticism, and feeling threatened by the success of others.

5 Ways to Promote a Growth Mindset

  1. Praise your child’s efforts instead of labeling a characteristic, such as “Wow, you are working so hard!” instead of “Wow, you are so smart!”
  2. Talk openly about mistakes and failures and how they help us grow
  3. Describe the brain as a muscle that can get stronger
  4. Encourage your child to tackle challenges and model the mantra, “I can do hard things!”
  5. Read this social story called “I Can Do Hard Things!” with your child

More on Growth Mindset 

Check out this awesome YouTube video breaking down Growth Mindset vs. Fixed Mindset-

Here’s a free 4-week guide for teaching growth mindset to children-

Here’s tips for teaching growth mindset to teens-

Source: “The Impact of a Growth Mindset.” The Growth Mindset – What Is Growth Mindset – Mindset Works, Mindset Works, 2017,

Kelsey Coaldrake, M.A. CCC-SLP is a Speech-Language Pathologist at Enrichment Therapy and Learning Center. Kelsey Coaldrake, M.A., CCC-SLP is speech language pathologist at Enrichment Therapy and Learning Center. ETLC has locations in the Iowa City, IA area and Des Moines, IA area. We provide individual speech language therapy and tutoring as well as offer a unique group, the Language Enrichment Academic Program (LEAP). At Enrichment Therapy and Learning Center our passion is to help kids achieve effective communication skills and gain academic success. Contact us for more information on how we can help your child succeed.

1210 Jordan Street, Suite 2A
North Liberty, IA 52317

2570 106th Street, Suite E
Urbandale, IA 50322

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