Embedding growth mind set into our community

Since we began to push our growth mind set initiative in September, I have explained in a series of blogs how we have tried to sow basic GM seeds via posters, assemblies and postcards home whilst encouraging and reporting back on classroom examples and our teachers developing their own very positive mind-sets so that the initiative begins to embed and have a discernible impact on learning.

http://www.meolscophighschool.co.uk/dep-blog/?cat=19

I did introduce year 7 parents to the main ideas in their September information evening.

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At subsequent year 8 and year 9 information evenings GM was mentioned briefly by Jen our maths subject leader to share her faculties expectation of parental support re maths.

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Many of our blogs have shared the impact GM has begun to make and have provided detailed student views so that we can take into account their views and amend our planning. Unfortunately our Easter Review Day surveys from last year, revealed that not many parents read the blogs so my dilemma in engaging our parental voice made me think of different approaches. Our bulletin, so the survey told me, is far more widely read so I advertised the blog again to see if I got any more viewers and have continued to use the bulletin to share GM ideas and have continued to explain aspects of GM and share GM Stars on it.

http://blog.meolscophighschool.co.uk/?p=674

The GM Stars and Progress Stars are popular but do parents fully understand what GM is all about?

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I want our students to go home and talk about their learning and I know parents want to support their children. However education has changed so much that many parents feel out of touch with modern teaching ideas and the communication with their children can become 1 sided and thus frustrating. To help our parents understand the crucial aspects of GM and enable them to converse in a basic GM language, I’ve firstly asked them in one of the additional survey questions on Review Day about their perceptions of GM [and our new BSG assessment] and secondly created some new comments for the SLT to use on our year 7 and 8 reports to emphasise the skills we feel are important. These obviously go home to all parents and I want to drip-feed key GM learning attributes which I feel will make a big difference to learning as the students move through their years with us. If teachers, students and parents can begin to use the same language of learning, I might start to get very excited!

The questions on Review Day will include;

We have changed our assessment system [no national curriculum levels anymore] and our reporting system to provide information on our new Bronze, Silver, Gold approach-have you found the information informative/clear/understandable? Has your child mentioned anything positive/negative about BSG?

We have gradually introduced the idea of the positive aspects of developing a Growth Mind Set into our lessons, assemblies and reward systems. We would like our parents to support this initiative-we think that it will make a big difference to student learning- but wonder if you understand what GM involves/would like to know more. What do you think?

The SLT have always written their own comments on each report but this time we have gone for a uniform approach so that the main key messages are sent home by all of us. Here are some examples of our year 7 drop-down comments. What do you think?

A superb first Meols Cop High School report-name-. Very well done! All of your teachers have commented positively on your attitude and commitment towards your learning and I especially enjoyed reading the comments in-subject [s]-
Overall a good first Meols Cop High School report-name.-well done! You have worked hard in year 7 and I especially enjoyed reading the comments in-subject [s]-
A mixed first Meols Cop High School report-name-with some good positive comments. I enjoyed the comments in-subject [s],however you do need to pay particular attention to the advice given in-subject[s]
A disappointing first Meols Cop High School year report-name-. It was good to see that you can learn well in –subject[s]- but greater commitment towards your learning and consistent effort needs to be made in all of your subjects
Having settled so well into secondary school it is important that you maintain your good start and begin to take even more responsibility for constantly evaluating how well your learning is progressing and what you will need to do to make further progress. Focus on any areas of weaknesses or anything you don’t clearly understand and challenge yourself to use a marginal gains approach to master difficult skills. This positive learning mind set will really help you throughout school. Aim for the stars!
Having settled well into secondary school it is important that you maintain your good start and begin to learn how to take more responsibility for constantly evaluating how well your learning is progressing and what you will need to do to make further progress. Focus on any areas of weaknesses or anything you don’t clearly understand and challenge yourself to use a marginal gains approach to master difficult skills. This positive learning mind set will really help you throughout school. Remember the key word YET!
Having settled quite well into secondary school it is important that you learn how to work consistently and effectively in all of your subjects. Read the advice that your teachers have given you carefully and challenge yourself to master any areas of weakness. Always think hard yourself about what strategies you could use when faced with a difficult aspect of learning and seek and use feedback from your peers and teachers to help you further.
I know that you will want to be much more focused on your learning in year 8 so that you are able to take home an excellent report next year. Think about the lessons that you have been successful in. What is it about your learning in these lessons that makes you such a good learner in them? I believe that you can transfer those skills into every lesson, even if you find some lessons more challenging than others. Do be ready to listen to feedback and advice from your teachers and peers so that you can use their help and your own hard work to make progress.
I can see that you have already developed an excellent attitude towards home-learning and as you move through the school, practising hard at home will really help you to strengthen your classroom learning. Keep this up!
I can see that you have already developed a good attitude towards home-learning and as you move through the school, practising hard at home will really help you to strengthen your classroom learning. Keep this up!
Your home-learning record varied across your subjects. It is important that you develop a routine that works for you so that you are prepared for the more demanding home-learning tasks that will be expected of you as you move through school and beyond. If you are finding it difficult to plan when to do your home-learning and getting it in on time-ask your learning tutor for help and advice.
Your home-learning record worries me. It is important that you develop a routine that works for you so that you are prepared for the more demanding home-learning tasks that will be expected of you as you move through school and beyond. If you are finding it difficult to plan when to do your home-learning and getting it in on time-ask your learning tutor for help and advice

You can see that we are pushing hard work, purposeful practice, marginal gains, self and peer critique and feedback-all important GM attributes. Our year 8 students should be able to consolidate and develop their learning further again and this hopefully is reflected in their comments.

A superb report-name-. Very well done! All of your teachers have commented positively on your attitude and commitment towards your learning and I especially enjoyed reading the comments in-subject [s]-
Overall a good report-name.-well done! You have worked hard in year 8 and I especially enjoyed reading the comments in-subject [s]-
A mixed report-name-with some good positive comments. I enjoyed the comments in-subject [s],however you do need to pay particular attention to the advice given in-subject[s]
A disappointing year 8 report-name-. It was good to see that you can learn well in –subject[s]- but greater commitment towards your learning and consistent effort needs to be made in all of your subjects.
By working so well in year 8 you have given yourself the perfect learning foundation to begin your G.C.S.E. subjects in year 9. I know that you have begun to develop a resilient learning mind-set and seek excellence in all of your learning. Aim as high as you can next year!
By working so well in year 8 you have given yourself the perfect learning foundation to begin to make even more learning progress in year 9. I know that you have already begun to develop a resilient learning mind-set and seek excellence in all of your learning. Aim as high as you can next year!
Use the advice given by your teachers to ensure that you show a consistently positive approach towards every aspect of your learning in year 9. Seek feedback from your teachers and peers to help you meet your learning targets and work as hard as you can to achieve success next year.
Year 9 is a crucial year and you need to be fully prepared to develop a positive ‘can do’ mind-set in every subject. Your teachers will always support your learning but you need to be prepared to practice and work hard to meet your learning targets next year. If you work on the ‘marginal gains’ needed in each subject; you will find progress easier to achieve.
Working and practising hard at home really does help to consolidate your classroom learning and prepare you for the hard work and dedication needed to be successful with your G.C.S.E.s and beyond. It was good to see that you have shown great commitment to your home-learning.
Working and practising hard at home really does help to consolidate your classroom learning and prepare you for the hard work and dedication needed to be successful with your G.C.S.E.s and beyond. It was good to read that you have shown an overall good commitment to your home-learning.
Working and practising hard at home really does help to consolidate your classroom learning and prepare you for the hard work and dedication needed to be successful with your G.C.S.E.s and beyond. Please make sure that you show good commitment to your home-learning in every subject.

I don’t know how well the comments will be received or whether they may need adapting but I hope that all can see our purpose and can understand where we hope that the acquisition of GM attributes will take our students. Please let me know if you think that this is the right way forward.

 

 

 

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  1. Pingback: Beyond National Curriculum Levels part 2 – a whole school discussion | Meols Cop High School

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