Earlier this summer, Jennifer Gonzales of Cult of Pedagogy inspired me to read the book Make It Stick, which was featured in her summer book club. The book promotes a variety of study strategies that go beyond the usual–and generally ineffective–reread and highlighting techniques. The book also encouraged teaching students about brain research and these study skills directly.

I searched the internet for texts that supported these ideas, but most of them were written by teachers for teachers–not for high school students. Finally I did find some articles that I could use with my high school students, as well as a growth mindset TedX Talk.

I constructed a two-part mini unit: It’s Not Brain Surgery. (OK, maybe it’s a bad name. I’m open to suggestions for better names.)

Part 1: I created a Zaption video about fixed vs. growth mindset, along with a short writing assignment. (This also served as an initial writing assessment so I could get a feel for where my students’ writing skills were.)

The feedback I received from my students was extremely positive. Many of them responded how they’d never known this before, and that the video was–(gasp!)–actually interesting!

Please use either of these items in your own classrooms, or allow them to inspire you to make a similar lesson of your own!