Carolyn Arthur

Primary Teacher

Allanton Primary School

  • Growth Mindset

What happens when I welcome mistakes in the classroom?


 Over the years education has created an errorless learning environment where pupils and teachers do not make mistakes. However research suggests that when children make mistakes their learning can be improved (Growth Mindset, 2015). If a mistake is made the child will remember the process. Trying and failing to find the answer is therefore beneficial to the learning (Hays, 2013). By allowing children to make mistakes we are giving them the opportunity to become confident individuals and successful contributors as desired within the Curriculum for Excellence (Scottish Government, 2009). If children are afraid of making mistakes then they are afraid of trying new things, being creative and thinking in different ways (Tugend, 2012). Carol Dweck and Jo Boaler believe that children making mistakes shows that they are being challenged and pushing themselves to the best of their ability. A child who answers questions correctly is not being pushed to their full capability. By celebrating mistakes in the classroom it allows the children to recognise the thinking behind the mistake, learn from what they have done and in turn will create a positive learning experience (Growth Mindset, 2015). Creating a culture where we do not allow the children to make mistakes and examine them we are not challenging the children enough.


 This enquiry aimed to investigate whether or not learning from mistakes can improve the mindset in my classroom.


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