Growth Mindset

Growth Mindset

"If you try try try, you can can can!"

What Is Growth Mindset?

We have started our journey of developing a culture of “Growth Mindset”. Growth Mindset is about learning to persevere when learning gets tough and understanding that intelligence is not fixed and can be changed through practice and hard work. It is also about understanding that through mistakes some of the best brain growth occurs.

The term ‘growth mindset’ refers to a way of thinking, learning and taking on challenges. A person with a growth mindset is open to constructive criticism, takes feedback and uses it, takes on new challenges, pushes themselves outside of their comfort zone and shows resilience and perseverance.

How does Growth Mindset develop learning?

The characteristics of effective learning have been proven by the research by renowned psychologist Carol Dweck. She has identified the characteristics of learners with a fixed and a growth mindset:

Her research shows us that by learning about mindsets, children can become more resilient and better able to overcome the learning challenges that they are presented with. Learning about mindsets improves children’s mental wellbeing and can increase their learning power. We know that pupils who have a positive attitude towards their learning will be successful in all that they do. We want all our pupils to relish challenges, embrace their mistakes as part of the learning process, value the importance of effort, respond carefully to feedback and take inspiration from others. This will help them to achieve, not only with us, but also in their future lives as adults.

Key concepts of Growth Mindset at St Catherine’s Primary School

  • We remember it’s always OK to make mistakes – we learn from them.
  • We never give up! We try a different approach, or use a different strategy.
  • We learn from each other – children often make the best teachers!
  • We don’t compare ourselves with others, but we do learn from others.
  • We challenge ourselves – which really helps us make progress.
  • We take risks – we don’t limit ourselves by taking the easy option.
  • We join in as much as possible – and we learn much more by being involved.
  • We remember that mastering something new feels so much better than doing something you can already do.
  • We remember that the brain is making new connections all the time – the only thing you need to know is that you can learn anything!

What can you do as parents?

We know that in order to fulfil the potential of our pupils and encourage them to become confident and resilient learners we, as a team of parents and staff, need to be modelling the mindset of a learner who is not afraid of making mistakes but who thrives upon them, knowing that this is all part of the learning process. The way in which we encourage children to learn and explore is vital to their success, not only at school but at home as well. Please see our parent guide and parent language summary  to help support your child at home.

…..from Carol Dweck herself “If parents want to give their children a gift, the best thing they can do is to teach their children to love challenges, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning.”


Please see our parent summary sheet and parent guide below.

If you would like to know more about the theory behind our approach, see the information below:

Suggested books for children that promote Growth Mindset:

  •          The Dot by Peter H Reynolds
  •          Your Fantastic Elastic Brain by JoAnn Deak
  •          Beautiful Oops! By Barney Saltzberg
  •          The Girl Who Never Made Mistakes by Gary Rubinstein
  •          The Lion Inside by Rachel Bright
  •          How to Catch a Star by Oliver Jeffers
  •          Rosie Revere Engineer by Andrea Beaty
  •          The Tortoise and the Hare by Janet Stevens
  •          Everyone Can Learn to Ride a Bicycle by Chris Raschka


Growth Mindset Video
Fixed Mindset Video