I'm continuing to research ways in which growth mindsets can be encouraged in learners. After scouring through Ted Talks I came across Ted Ferriss talk on why you should define your fears instead of your goals. The premise of fear setting is that it is our fears that stop us from taking risks in life and without implementing a specific strategy to face our fears we can never truly reach our goals and true potential.
Ferriss explains that by naming the possible implications of taking a risk he is able to implement strategies to prevent the consequences from occurring. In doing so he is empowered to take action as he is able to seperate what he can and cannot control. While Ferriss examples are the everyday fears that he himself faces, as I was watching the talk I started to ask myself how can I relate this to primary school learners?
We already know that risk taking and experiencing failure is a major component when developing a growth mindset. Without taking risks we can never learn from our mistakes and cannot further develop our skills as we remain in a 'safezone.' This theory is not a knew one and forms the basis of many educational ideals. So how can introduce fear-setting to encourage growth in our learners? What if we were to firstly simplify the process and apply it to small parts of learning? For example, attempting unknown words in reading we could say, "what's the worse thing that could happen if you have a try?"
As students become more familiar with the process and the prospect that risks may have consequences, we could expand on the process to tackle larger obstacles in their learning. Some of these areas where this may be appropriate could be public speaking, attempting / completing assessments, initiating friendships, standing up for what they believe in.
Personally I don't believe that this approach is for everyone. By highlighting the specific consequences of an action or risk may actually stop some learners (who would have been none the wiser) from taking the initial risk. Fear setting would be more beneficial for students who are naturally risk adverse or who may experience anxiety. For these students outlining the worse possible scenario and steps to get around the possible consequences provides them with an armour and the confidence to have a go.