Mindset & the Hidden Workings of Our Mind that Affect Student (and Our) Achievement & Success -David Ghoogasian #AIMS

AIMS Teachers Retreat 2014
Opening Keynote – Session Notes

(discussion) Take a look at the title and discuss, at your tables, what you think I’m going to be talking about

Whodunnit Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ubNF9QNEQLA
How many of you saw a change in the scene?
And how many changes did you see?
There were 21 changes, and even people who had seen this video before only saw ~10.

“It’s easy to miss something you’re not looking for” <– this video was actually a public service announcement for watching out for people on bicycles

(discussion) What kind of forces are at play among us?
physical environment
social interactions
“Learning doesn’t happen in a vacuum!”

Think of the dieting industry. Message: eat less, move more. But there are industries that have risen and prospered around diets.
In the field of education, how many things have come and gone that were the “answer to everything”

(discussion) Prompt: thinking — what do you think I mean by thinking?
Turn to somebody that you haven’t met and begin discussing
Taking in and making sense of information
Making complex decisions
The act of doing almost anything
Automaticity: there are things that exist in your behavioral memory – that become simple and almost effortless once you’ve learned them

Bat + ball = $1.10
The bat costs $1 more than the ball
How much does the ball cost?
How many people yell out 10 cents? (Answer: 5 cents)

10 questions. What is the first word that comes to mind? Say answer aloud:
What color is this piece of paper? — (everyone says: white)
What do cows drink? — (everyone says: milk)

But if he had said: “You have 30 seconds to answer this question: ‘what do cows drink’?”. Not many would have said milk.

We have 2 systems of thinking.
System 1: always on; “snap judgement”
System 2: a lazy systems; doesn’t like to be thinking or aroused; almost always trusts what system 1 says

(discussion) In groups, think about action/next steps
My idea: give students time to think, don’t always encourage students who are providing the 1st answer; blurting out answers versus giving students time to process, thinking, & submit their result in a different way (i.e.: using PearDeck)

How is the brain like a muscle? You can exercise it / train it, you can make it stronger, “use it or lose it”, “the brain becomes what the brain does” — if the brain plays soccer all day, it gets good at soccer (provided you practice properly); when you don’t use your brain, the pathways will start to diminish

“If you’ve never failed, then you’ve never lived”
How many times, as teachers, have you heard from parents: “but he was doing fine in (subject) last year”
How many of us have students unaccustomed to getting anything but an A? Particularly big issue in some of our private schools.
If it’s too easy, we need to do something about it! Nothing should be too easy!
Is your goal to teach students how to think? Or how to give the right answer?
The first time a student doesn’t give the right answer, then they think they must not be as strong as they thought they were.
How do we change the mindset: “If I have to work, I am not smart”?

“He’s so smart”
We are praising a result versus praising a behavior
And then we need to maintain that result –> fear of failure?

“Easy and fast does not mean smart and does not mean good.” If it’s too easy, and too fast, that is *not* good.
All throughout school, students had to learn how to learn.

Stereotype threat vs stereotype lift
Think about this when framing questions. And when asking questions (who are you choosing to ask questions to)

Michael Jordan “Failure” Commercial: http://youtu.be/JA7G7AV-LT8


Note: the format of this keynote was really neat, particularly for an opening one where participants didn’t yet know one another. It was less structured than the typical keynote – David really went with the flow of our interests and conversations from the discussion prompts he set. He also had us moving around (not too much that it caused disruption, but just enough) / standing up / shifting discussion groups. Really enjoyed this keynote!

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