Throughout my college experience, grades were my only concern until my English professor introduced Dweck from a Ted Talk. What Dweck points out is, “But if you get the grade ‘Not Yet,’ you understand that you’re on a learning curve. It gives you a path into the future.” In other words, Dweck believes that the power of ‘Not Yet’ can help students understand their learning curve and where there needs to be improvement, which I can fully understand from studying in English 122 where Professor Miller grades in a similar manner and unlike in high school where an F was a F, Not Yet just meant I’m still learning something new and need practice to reach a better result in the future.
Those who look towards a challenge are what Dweck calls a, “Growth mindset,” but those who only focus on their failure and don’t look pass that and avoid challenges, Dweck calls a, “Fixed mindset.” Dweck brings in the concept of mindsets to provide an overall idea of how students and everyday people think. This also brings in the flaws on our modern grading system because it can promote a ‘Fixed mindset.’ That why when Dweck noticed, “a high school in Chicago where students had to pass a certain number of courses to graduate, and if they didn’t pass a course, they got the grade ‘Not Yet.'” She had seen this as a great opportunity for those students because of the reward of seeing, ‘Not Yet,’ unlike an F on an exam. I can’t help but agree with her point due to this system seeming to promote a ‘Growth mindset’ that can led to future students to solve ongoing challenges not only in the classroom but in everyday life, which can help provide that clear path that Dweck had mentioned earlier. I do see the benefits of grading in this manner just as Professor Miller had graded my PLT #1 in this manner, where I was able to know my weaknesses and strengths for future projects.
One of my texts that I think aligns accurately with my experience as a college students in this first semester would be my journals. Since the beginning of the semester we have been working on our journals everyday. I believe these journals show my growth as a college students. When I first began these journals at the beginning of the semester they were just homework. Nothing too important that I was worried about. As the semester went on I learned that the journals were more than just homework, they were an anchor to most projects and helped me think through most of my work. When I figured this out I began to try harder on my journals and started taking the time to edit mistakes. In Journal 15, I had to talk about two connections I made between Dweck’s Ted Talk and my experience this semester. I had to have a claim, quotes and then sentences explaining Dweck’s Ted Talk and my experiences. At first I thought I did well writing journal 15. I found myself wrong when my coach, Professor Drown, looked over my work. He explained to me that not everyone is going to understand what I am talking about because not everyone has watched this Ted Talk. I learned that I had to restate my sentences and understand what part of the quote is most important to what I’m trying to say. Professor Drown also explained to me that I would have to explain myself more during this journal to show what I was trying to get at.
Throughout this year we have done about 20 journals and each one of them I have been able to connect my experience as a student here and a student in the past. In my life I have always been a student to get my work done right away and try my hardest. Since I have been at college I have learned so much more than I have in one class in high school. In our class we started off looking at Habits of the creative mind which gave us insight to what we learned in high school and how to unlearn the old techniques we have had. In journal #2 we wrote about What is unlearning in this context and How might you be unlearning one or more of the follow? I looked back to high school and thought about all the skills I was taught like the five paragraph essay and realized that unlearning in this context is talking about be able to forget all those set rules that you had in high school about writing and to make yourself more open to new ideas and to open your mind to curiosity. I saw how you have to be flexible with your writing and engage with new sources, ideas and people. Being flexible leads you to new ways of thinking and helps you adapt to new circumstances. After reflecting on habits through this journal I have noticed myself breaking out of those habits and seeing my writing growing threw the semester. Being able to have Jesse Miller , Eric Drown and these resources like Habits of the creative mind and TS/IS have shaped me to look at my writing in a new perspective. Like a coach I have looked at what I did well and try to find a way to improve my weaker areas. Gawande Ted talked showed me how having a coach like Jesse miller or Eric Drown can help guide me to the right direction for success and lead me to my fullest potential. This semester I have learned how to unlearn the 5 paragraph essay, summarize properly and also to put my oar into different conversations while focusing on others ideas and points of views. These journals that we have completed have shaped my entire thought process and have taught me to always be open to new ideas and have a creative mind to give insight on how to learn in a way that will better me this year.
5 November 2018
Dweck dives deep into the concepts of growth and fixed mindset, especially in younger generations. The system of letter grades can trap a kid in this fixed mindset because they feel like they do not have the power to get a better grade next time. She talk about a new concept of “Not Yet”, and by changing the “F” to “Not Yet” can increase a child’s want to learn. Dweck backs this when she says, “ But other students felt it was tragic, catastrophic. From their more fixed mindset perspective, their intelligence had been up or judgement, and they failed. Instead of luxuriating in the power of yet, they were gripped in the tyranny of now.” Fixed mindset is when a person lets challenges defeat them, backing down from conflict or hardship. On the contrary, growth mindset is when a person works to get through challenges that stand in front of them. This mindset is developed once a person realizes that education and learning is on a curve, not something you get or don’t get. Once a child understand they are on a learning curve, they begin to engage more deeply because they know that they can get smarter by trying. Dweck supports this by saying, “ The usual math game rewards you for getting answers right, right now, but this game rewarded process. And we got more effort, more strategies, more engagement over longer periods of time, and more perseverance when they hit really, really hard problems.”. The idea of rewarding kids when they do something right has been proven to make kids resilient to other varieties of their once praised achievement. Meaning if someone tells them to do something different than how did it when they got rewarded, they will tend to resist it because they think they have already learned all they need to know.
In Atul Gawande: Want to get great as something? Get a coach, mainly talks about coaching. Gawande Explains how having a coach can lead to better choices. He also explains how when people learn something and it doesn’t require them to have a coach anymore they have to start relying on self teaching. According to Gawande in order to be better at what you do you need a coach to observe and critique your work. Out of the three Ted talks that I experience I feel as though Gawande is the best choice for my response. Before I even became a college student I was only doing one of these things that Gawande brings up, which was self teaching. For example when I started to get interested into YouTube I wanted to make a YouTube channel. However, I knew nothing about YouTube and how to become YouTuber so I went out my way and looked up a lot of videos and did a lot of research on how to be a YouTuber. That was just one of those concepts that I had already in the books before I got to college. I never really did good in english and this semester I decided for that to change. Luckily I was assign an english coach who turns out to be very helpful in making me a better english student. He does exactly what Gawande talks about and observer and critique me. “Turns out there are numerous problems in making it on your own. You don’t recognize the issues that are standing in your way or if you do, you don’t necessarily know how to fix them.And the result is that somewhere along the way, you stop improving. And I thought about that, and I realized that was exactly what had happened to me as a surgeon.” “But it’s the small things that matter. “Did you notice that the light had swung out of the wound during the case? You spent about half an hour just operating off the light from reflected surfaces.”
One thing I found most helpful from the review was that they gave me knowledge that I forgot to talk about in my paper. I also got feedback on how I structured my paper. They told me I did a good job on setting it up that I just needed to incorporate my own thinking into the paper. I explained a lot about what was going on in the yet and not yet but if i put my own idea in then the reader will understand how I look at that kinda of method to help someone learn.
In Amy Cuddy’s talk she mainly talks about the power of nonverbal language. At the beginning of the talk she talks about how body language, how one person’s body language can express that person’s current emotional stage. Moreover, Cuddy talks about how nonverbal behavior change out mind, our feeling and our physiology. She showed picture of Bolt who spread out his arm after he won a competition.Cuddy mentioned when people are proud of what they have achived thats what we often or feel powerful in the moment. And of course she explained when people are feeling powerless, depressed, lonely at the moment we make our as small as possible, avioding physical contact with others. All of the previous evidence explained how the mind change our body, but is it true that our bodies change our mind too?” That’s the question she brings up. According to scientific study, body language can change our mind, if you spread out make you self comfortable in somewhere for two minuets, your body can produce high testosterone and low cortisol which cause lower stress. So before you go to any big meeting, make yourself big for two minutes in bathroom which can really produce positive result. That is a example of “fake it till you make it”, and it is a key concept of Cuddy’s talk. I found it connect to my experience of being a college student here in America, in a new culture and is different from where i’m from. Moreover, being a freshmen in college itself its a challenge. It was really rough in the beginning i was lost, dont know what to do, and i feel i dont belong here However i fake it just like what cuddy did when she was in Havard. I protend that i know what is going on in class but i dont, so i listen. When teacher assigned a 5 page essay i tell my self “ its only a 10 pages of essay, no big deal.” Ever since i come here I protend that i like Macaroni and Cheese even though i still hate it deep inside me. I start to drink coffee every morning and by the way unlike M cheese i actually love coffee. Everyday im telling myself that i deserve to be here, here is where i belong. Its only half way through this year, i wont say that i make it, but i’m in a good process.
The power of a few words can go a long way. The power of “yet” and “not yet” go much deeper than anyone that hears those words would think. By focusing on “yet” and “not yet” instead of giving people in school letter grades it overlooks the bigger problem that kids are failing out of school which just makes them discouraged and not wanting to even go or even think about learning. The idea that the yet and not yet system will work using a growth mindset. A growth mindset is you know you have room to improve at whatever you are doing, a fixed mindset you believe that you have no improvements to be made or you do not believe that you can get better at whatever you’re doing. In this speech she say’s “It gives you a path into the future,” referring to this yet and not yet system. I believe that it is a great idea and can put people’s mindset in the right direction instead of just failing them and having them think they failed. “This happened because the meaning of effort and difficulty were transformed.” She talks about this saying that effort and difficulty made some people feel dumb if they were “not yet” there or where they wanted to be. If you put into anyone’s mind that they can do what you are trying to teach them then it may take a little bit of time for them to learn it but as long as in your head and they do think they can do it. Having a growth mindset can change your learning ability for the best. When someone thinks that they are nothing they will have no more room for growth and feel stuck which then they start to tell themselves they can’t get better. Having the not yet there is saying that you can get there it is just a matter of time and effort.
Altu Gawande talks a lot about how having a coach can help understand what you are doing wrong and how you can improve. He says that a coach can help you make better decision and improve on what you already know. They can critique you on things that you may not know you are doing. Having a coach this semester in college has helped a lot. When I first started I was worried about how well I was going to do. With out first journals having a coach to show me what I was doing wrong then what I could improve on helped me see how well my work can be. Being able to have someone there to not give me all the answers but guide my way. When writing the artifacts I was so caught up on the idea that a paragraph has a structure of five sentences and a paper had just an intro, three body paragraphs and a conclusion. With my first article I had one big paragraph not really knowing what to do. With the help of Eric I found out that I could make my writing more effective by breaking it up. Instead of just doing it for me he showed me some tips then had me break up my own paper. Once I was done he would look over it then tell me what I did wrong and right. If i did it wrong then he would say what I did wrong then help me figure out how I can remember and how to fix it. Another thing coaches can do is give you praise. Telling you that you are doing something right is an amazing feeling. I have never been good at discussion and putting my thoughts out there. After the first week I wanted to know what I can do to do better in class. Having Jesse as a coach and being able to ask what I can do. Just hearing that i’m doing good and just speaking up more in class can help me out and better myself was what I needed to hear to have confidence in myself. Having a good coach that you know when you have problems and can go to really helps so then if you are struggling you can go to them for help. Having the Mid-semester report really helped me know how I am doing. Then writing about it after just let me see in writing that i’m not doing a bad job and i’m on the right path to getting where I want to be.
Throughout the last two weeks of class we listened to three different TED talk speakers, Carol Dweck, a professor of psychology at Stanford University, Atul Gawande, a surgeon and writer, and Amy Cuddy, a social psychologist and public speaker. During their talks they all shared their views on different concerns they have about the human body and brain function. Carol Dweck spoke of how someone can improve their learning based on their mindset, Atul Gawande on becoming better at something through coaching, and Amy Cuddy discusses body language and faking it until you make it. All three of these speakers have different thoughts about human behavior, but they all link together on how people can better themselves based on learning and having a growth mindset.
My first semester as a college student came off to a rough start. I have struggled many times with my more advanced classes such as chemistry and biology. I found my experiences so far this semester connect best to Gawande’s speech on coaching. He is known as a great surgeon with good post-surgery outcomes, but decided to get a coach to improve his technique. He found that his coach had critiqued much of his work even though he thought it went perfectly. I currently have an english coach this semester, Eric Drown. So far he has helped me improve my writing technique and helps me understand my thoughts more clearly so I can better understand what I want to write.
Coaching with Eric made me realize I could get by in high school without trying very hard, but college is a different story. I’ll bring a completed or partially completed assignment with me to the session thinking it’s fine and not much needs to be changed; many things needed to change. Gawande states, “Turns out there are numerous problems in making it on your own.You don’t recognize the issues that are standing in your way or if you do, you do not necessarily know how to fix them. And the result is that somewhere along the way, you stop improving. And I thought about that, and I realized that was exactly what was happening to me as a surgeon.” When I write a paper or work on a project, there are many times I don’t notice mistakes that someone else will, having someone to critique your work and notice things will help improve my work for next time. This is exactly what Gawande wants people to do, go out and get help.
Unlike high school, I have access to a tutoring center at the University. When I become confused on an assignment or a certain concept in a class I make my way over to SASC to receive help. This quote also reflects my life as a gymnast. My coach, Gary, would always push me to my limit, encourage me to try harder skills or sometimes even fix skills that need tweaking. It was always a non stop process of trying new things or improving old ones and because of that I became one of the best on my team. He noticed problems with my skills that I wouldn’t think of unless he was there, whether that be what my landing looked like, the amount of steps I’m taking before reaching the vault or sometimes at tiny, but important, as pointing my toes.
Within these different experiences I have gained many skills that I would not have been able to achieve on my own if it wasn’t for the help of my coaches academically and athletically. Learning from coaches in these two ways has helped me improve my skills in these two areas, I know what to look out for in certain situations and can correct myself when I’m on my own.
Gawande’s speech was meant to make his audience realize that even if you’re good at something, there’s always room for improvement. And although one may think their work is perfect someone will always catch onto issues that aren’t seen by the person and doing this will help them learn for next time.
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