Praise: choose your words carefully.

In a recent 3250 forum one of my classmates, Robynne provided us with an opportunity to share our thoughts on praise in the classroom.   There was healthy debate on “if and when” but many agreed that praise can be effective if delivered in an appropriate manner.    Donna Ferguson’s blog post “Praise in the Classroom” gives a succinct overview of what constitute effective praise.


I was reminded of a book I recently read Grit by Anglea Duckworth.   It’s a fascinating study of how we develop a “stick to it” attitude or “grit”  and why some people are capable of great accomplishments and while others struggle.  In one chapter she focuses on the developing the growth mindset; fostering a belief in ones own ability to accomplish something through grit.  While the discussion focussed a bit on the parent child relationship I found the examples of how subtle differences in wording can affect the growth mindset.  Some examples:


Grit table

It made me think further about how I deliver praise and what words I choose.  If you’re intrigued by Grit Id suggest watching Angela’s TED Talk :








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