Are you preparing your child for the future or focus on today results?

Do you bring up your child to care about today grade or tomorrow life?

There is this famous estimate that 85% of the jobs that will exist in 2030 haven't yet been invented (see research here). With the life getting more uncertain for our children in terms of future challenges and opportunities, the best skill we and the school can give them is the skill to deal with unknown future and be flexible to learn.

That is why “The Growth Mindset” is now a buzz word among top London schools. I can see benefits of the approach with my 7 years old daughter.  If my 9 years old son teases and asks her, if she can do divisions as fast as him, she will answer, “I cannot do it…yet” and she does not get upset when she fails (most of the time).  So what is the Growth Mindset about and what we can do at home as parents to support it?

The concept was originated by Dr Carol Dweck, which you can read about in her book Mindset - Updated Edition: Changing The Way You think To Fulfil Your Potential or brows the site

My personal two favourite videos that explains the concept are below.

TED talk with Dr Dweck to watch for the parents

Below is a video to watch with your (7+) children:

To summarise, the starting point for the parents is to praise your child wisely.

One should not praise intelligence/talent or focus on a result. According to the research, praising the effort the child is engaged in leads to the child applying even more effort, more strategies and more engagement over period of time. That leads to more perseverance when she/he meets a difficulty, which also gives the child more confidence.

My favourite book for kids to get some practice with developing a growth mindset is Big Life Journal (my friend Helen’s discovery).  It is a hands-on book that explains the concept, has inspirational stories and allows kids to keep their own journal. The company behind the book has a great Facebook page and suggests a lot of activities. The book is only shipped from the US but it is worth the wait.

big life journal for growth mindset.jpg

There is also a book Your Fantastic Elastic Brain Stretch It, Shape It which explains how the brain functions and why we can grow and learn over time.

elastic brain.jpg

Let me know what you think and do share any tips how you help your children to build the growth mindset.



PS Later this month, we plan to host speakers talking about parenting for 21st century. Emails us if you would like to know more at

anya abdulakh