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Thomas Harding Junior School

Achievement Through Aspiration

Growth Mindset

Growth Mindset 

At Thomas Harding Junior School , we want every pupil in our care to be a successful learner. Most importantly, we recognise that instilling positive attitudes towards learning will accelerate pupils progress and ensure that they reach their potential. Consequently, a key concept which shapes the ethos of our school is Growth Mindset, based on the work of Carol Dweck.

As a Growth Mindset school we actively encourage challenge, resilience and effort in all of our pupils. We believe that everyone’s abilities and talents can be developed through dedication and hard work. We aim to create a love of learning coupled with a culture of resilience in the face of challenge and difficulties. In practice, this means that our pupils are urged to view mistakes as an important part of the learning process, not as failure.


The results below are from our Pupil Surveys and are a testament to our excellent teaching practices and Growth Mindset culture.

  • 97% of pupils agree that they like being challenged.
  • 97% of pupils can articulate how Growth Mindset helps them to learn. 


    So, what is Growth Mindset?

    Here at Thomas Harding , we want our children to understand that it is okay to be stuck and to make mistakes, and that some of their best learning is done when they find things the hardest. Rather than simply praising success, we praise effort and persistence. We know that FAIL stands for First Attempt In Learning and so failure shouldn’t be a scary – it’s just part of the learning journey!

    We believe the best thing to do is to teach children to love challenges, be intrigued by mistakes, enjoy effort, and keep on learning. We try to make sure that all children encounter challenges and find some work tough! Our children recognise that effort, persistence and good teaching are what help them improve.

    We have learnt about the two types of mindsets that children and adults can have; a ‘fixed’ mindset and a ‘growth’ mindset. Below is an overview of the traits of each: 

    Fixed Mindset 

    • I like my work to be easy 
    • I don’t like to try a challenge 
    • I want people to praise me for how clever I am 
    • I believe I cannot change how clever I am 
    • I don’t like to try new things because I won’t be very good at it 
    • I give up easily

    Growth Mindset 

    • I never give up 
    • I like my work to be difficult – it means I am learning 
    • I love challenges 
    • I want people to praise me for the effort I put into my work 
    • I believe I can get more intelligent by working hard 
    • I feel clever when I’m learning something new 
    • I learn from my mistakes  

    It has been proven that having a Growth Mindset can improve children’s progress and attainment. As a result, we are teaching our children that by having a Growth Mindset they can grow their brains and intelligence (like a muscle!) and achieve anything they want!