Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Reflections on a Growth Mindset Part III-The Music of Growth

This summer I attempted to go back to running.  I set a goal of running at least 1 mile per day from the day after graduation until school resumed in August.  I made it 32 days in a row, but have not run now in nearly 3 weeks.  The idea that we form habits by doing something for at least 28 days is true, and my running had become a habit, but the habit of not doing something is also very powerful and often hard to overcome because it is soooo much easier than doing something.  For example, last night I had intended to start running again, get a new streak going, but it was too cold to run.  Yep, it was 70 degrees in Indiana in July and I was too cold to run, I wonder what will happen when it is -10 in February and I have to get into my street parked car to drive to work?  I am not sure if this inertia is the result of a fixed or growth mindset, but what I do know is that this inertia keeps me from experiencing my daily dose of growth mindset via Miley Cyrus, Eminem, Kristin Chenoweth, and Idina Menzel.

As I ran more, I started creating playlists of music, searching for songs to keep me going.  The three best songs in those runs became The Climb by Miley Cyrus, Lose Yourself by Eminem, and Defying Gravity sung by Kristin Chenoweth and Idina Menzel in Wicked.

I tried to time the songs to my runs, so they would come out at the times when I most needed to be inspired to dig deep and keep going.  Inevitably they always would, because each song speaks to that biological desire we all have to learn, grow, and become better versions of ourselves.

Ultimately this matters because the more we can expose our students to a growth mindset, in ways that they can connect to and internalize, the sooner they will begin to embed that mindset into their own lives.  And that is when we will be able to see their growth begin to take off.

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