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Clifton School believes in the power of yet

Inspired by the work of American author and psychologist Carol Dweck, Clifton educators from Nursery to Grade 6 are incorporating her concepts into their lessons and class projects.

Kim Webster, a Special Education Resource Teacher at Clifton, said she was introduced to Dweck through her TED Talk titled The Power of Yet, in which the psychologist preaches a growth mindset as opposed to a fixed mindset.

"A growth mindset means believing in ourselves and that with hard work and dedication we can achieve what we set our minds to," Webster said.

Clifton principal Nancy MacTavish said incorporating Dweck's concepts in the classroom is changing how Clifton students respond to challenges.

"We have been talking to the students and reminding them there will always be things that they can't do and also things that they might not be good at, but if you keep trying and working hard you will get there," MacTavish said.

"Instead of thinking 'I can't do this' remember to think 'I can't do this…yet.'"

To help deliver the power of yet, Webster created a mindfulness Bitmoji classroom, which contains links to  music, videos and books that illustrate a growth mindset. 

"We use (the power of yet) for goal setting and it helps to scaffold learning and create SMART goals," Webster said.

"SMART goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely goals. It helps students to understand that we can learn from our mistakes and from feedback from others. It also shifts the mindset of being threatened or jealous of someone for their abilities to being inspired by them."

Webster said power of yet thinking is helping students to realize that mistakes are important to success.

"They're learning that mistakes are good and we can actually learn from them," Webster said.

"It removes that roadblock of thinking that they can't achieve something by realizing that everyone runs into barriers. By having a growth mindset and using the power of yet we can keep trying and get better at something."

Clifton students who have adopted a growth mindset can attest that there is power in positive thinking.

"Just keep going until you get where you want and then start something new. Like me and math. I won't stop until I get where I have to be and I'm not where I'm supposed to be yet," said Riley, a Grade 4 student.

"The power of yet has taught me to always believe in myself and always say 'I can't do this, yet!' The power of yet is unstoppable!" said Mariana, a Grade 4 student.



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