A growth mindset can be characterized as the belief and thought process that skills, knowledge, and talent can be developed as time ⌚️passes if one puts in the necessary efforts.
This growth mindset is necessary for kids to understand and change their attitude toward learning and knowledge to help them realize that they can develop their intelligence over time with effort and will always have the potential to grow⤵️.
Growth Mindset Activities for Your Kids
These growth mindset activities can help change the mindset of your kids by looking at things and situations with a more positive approach instead of letting them affect their confidence.
Having a growth mindset facilitates kids to achieve their goals 🎯 with perseverance and confidence regardless of the difficulties that come their way and dampen their spirits.
In this blog, I have compiled a list of activities to help your kids adopt a growth mindset⤵️.
Practice Growth Mindset Yoga
Grow-ga, short for Growth-Mindset Yoga, 🧘🏽♀️ is a great way to get kids moving and flexible while developing their concentration and a growth-oriented mindset.
You can turn this exercise into a growth mindset activity for your kids by incorporating positive affirmations and statements they can repeat and attach to themselves as they hold each yoga pose or movement.
Read Aloud Books
My son enjoys reading books, and this helped him understand his growth mindset better.
Have a reading session with your kids with storybooks and picture books 📖 related to developing a growth mindset with colorful images and illustrations for kids to look at and read through.
Some books you can include in your kids’ reading shelf are Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae, How to Catch a Star by Oliver Jeffers, Bike On, Bear by Cynthea Liu, Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzi, and The Book of Mistakes by Corinna Luyken, to name a few.
Small acts of kindness can create a big difference, and being kind is one of the values of a growth-oriented mindset.
Encourage kids to perform one act of kindness ☺️ for an entire week as a challenge and record their experiences and outcomes in a journal to keep track of their good deeds.
It can be as simple as complimenting someone or helping a neighbor in their garden.
Learn Related Words
Allow your kids to explore the words commonly associated with a growth mindset to get them acquainted with and understand their meanings better with an engaging activity.
Write down words like creativity, courage, mistakes, effort, success, and other related growth mindset words on individual sheets of paper. ✍🏼
Then, ask your kids to jot down what each of the words written means to them and their thoughts in one or two lines.
Educate your kids on the difference between a fixed mindset that does not lead to success and a growth mindset that paves the way for success and how the latter can be beneficial, with a few examples.
Divide a sheet of paper into two sides and write down phrases attributed to having a fixed mindset, and kids can help you write down thoughts and alternate phrases for a result of a growth mindset.
Sing along with your kids to the song 🎵 “Everyone Makes Mistakes” from the well-known children’s television program called Sesame Street.
One of the characters, Big Bird, sings this song to remind kids that everyone does end up making mistakes, and it is okay to do so, and one should keep trying despite it.
My children love listening and singing along to this classic song.
Color Motivational Quotes
My son enjoys doing this fun activity that brings him a sense of calm.
Get your kids to pick up their crayons and fill some coloring sheets 🖍️ with inspirational quotes and phrases. Kids can color and decorate these pages while being motivated by the wording.
Complete a Checklist
Kids can analyze themselves and create a strong growth mindset by completing a simple self-awareness checklist ✅ to identify areas for their self-improvement.
Print templates with simple questions for kids to complete, with questions ranging from what stresses them, their strong and weak areas, and things that make them comfortable or not.
You can also do this analyzing activity orally as a conversation for kids to understand themselves better.
Make an Accomplishment Jar
Celebrate and keep track of your kids’ achievements with an accomplishment jar for them to look back at for a boost of confidence, happiness, and the motivation to do more.
Choose a mason jar or any clear jar of choice and encourage your kids to write down their wins – small or big, like helping parents or getting a good grade on strips of paper, and add them to fill their accomplishment jar.
You can even reward them with treats every time the jar gets full to encourage them to keep going.
Practice 3-2-1 Exercise
Practice the 3-2-1 questioning exercise strategy with your kids to aid in the improvement of their growth mindset.
Guide your kids to answer these three questions❓ to themselves at the end of every day or week to assess their progress – three things they learned, two things they want to learn, and one question they want to ask.
My son has benefited a lot by doing this activity regularly.
Crumple Mistake Papers
Crush and throw past mistakes away with this fun activity that kids can do to view their mistakes positively and then move past those feelings of regret and sadness.
Kids can write down a mistake they might have made during the day or week on individual sheets of paper.📄 Allow them to take a moment to let it sink in, crumple the paper like a ball, and throw it away or aim at the wall as an act of acceptance and letting go of the past.
My son enjoys role-playing different characters in various situations.
Role-playing is an effective way for kids to understand how a growth mindset works and gives them a chance to showcase acting skills. 🎭
Pair up kids and provide different scenarios where they are facing a difficulty or obstacle. They can role-play their way out of these scenarios using a growth-oriented mindset.
Exit an Escape Room
Escape rooms aren’t only fun for kids to play in, but these activities also help instill a growth-oriented mindset to escape from the room by all means.
In trying to make it out of escape rooms, kids are encouraged to find new ways and come up with ideas and solutions🕵🏽♀️ to make it out of the room with a mindset of overcoming obstacles.
Design Quote Posters
Supply your kids with chart paper and art supplies for a poster-making activity.
Kids can design and color their posters 🖼️ using already existing quotes or let them be creative and make new and unique ones from their imagination to combine into inspirational posters to motivate and inspire them.
Plan a Course of Action
Mistakes and failures are part and parcel of everyone’s lives, and you need to prepare kids to face and overcome difficulties and obstacles.
Encourage kids to plan a course of action on moving past difficulty or failure by analyzing and reflecting on the situation with introspective questions – What happened? What went wrong? What could be changed? What lesson did they learn?
Fold Origami Penguins
Folding origami penguins is a simple and great way to test the mindset of kids and a practical way to demonstrate the two different mindsets through this activity.
Instruct kids to fold penguins 🐧 with no instructions and guidance and a set time limit of 1-2 minutes. Explain to kids that those who gave up had a fixed mindset, and those who tried until the end and created something had a growth mindset.
After an intense test folding, give them instructions and fold an adorable origami penguin together.
Lead by Example
Kids generally follow by example and mimic the actions and words of adults around them.
You can adopt a growth-oriented mindset in your day-to-day life for kids to get influenced and adopt the same mindset approach to an extent.
Get kids to repeat growth-mindset-related positive affirmations 🕊️ as a routine exercise to build confidence and boost motivation to overcome difficulties.
Some positive affirmations they can incorporate are –
“Failure is not a permanent condition,”
“I am ready for anything,”
“I trust myself,” and
“I choose to focus on the positive,” etc.
Kids can repeat 2-3 affirmations every day as a part of their daily routine.
Make a Flip the Flop Craft
Flip the mindset using a fun craft activity that my son enjoyed doing.
Draw and cut an outline of a pair of flip-flop sandals from colored paper. Kids can write their mistakes or failures on one side as a flop, and they can flip the situation with a better mindset and acceptance on the other side of the flip-flops.
Look Through Famous Failures
Give your kids examples of famous and successful people and describe the difficulties they overcame and the failures 😔 they experienced that paved the way for them to attain their dreams.
Print out flashcards with descriptions of successful versions of the person in the front and their failures and struggles in the back of the cards to teach kids that their dreams are achievable.
You can also do this with real-life success stories of people around you – family and friends who have achieved their dreams despite the countless failures, to make them familiar for kids to connect with.
Transform Negatives into Positives
Negative thoughts can pull you down. Teach kids to transform the negative inner voice in their heads into a positive one to help them become more confident in themselves and their capabilities.
Set SMART Goals
Introduce kids to the concept of SMART goals to help them set their goals and achieve them efficiently.
Kids can narrow down and write a list of short-term goals 📝 they want to achieve. Place it somewhere visible as a constant reminder for them to work on them. You can keep track of their progress, encourage them with full support, and don’t forget to celebrate every small win.
Journaling is a great way for kids to develop a growth mindset and put down their thoughts on paper ✍🏼 and the goals they want to achieve in a concrete form to serve as a reminder.
Incorporate bullet journaling as a practice for kids to follow regularly. They can write down and sketch their new experiences, thoughts, things they’ve learned, and things they found difficult.
You can also give them prompts to write about in their bullet journal.
Complete 30-Day Challenge
Encourage kids to take up and complete a 30-day challenge ☀️ where they finish an activity every day for an entire month.
Continuous effort and determination can help kids complete the task and instill a growth-oriented mindset where they can take up challenges and try new things that are simple for their age.
You can tweak the challenge for kids by reducing the duration to 21 days.
Make a “Yet” Crown
Get creative and make a crown as a craft activity for kids to have fun and improve their growth-oriented mindset.
Print a template of a crown, trace it on a colored sheet of paper, and cut. Kids can decorate this crown with crayons, stickers, and glitter and write a few of their goals on the paper crown 👑 as a reminder that they are “yet” to achieve those goals, and it is possible to do so.
Reward Good Efforts
Rewards are necessary to boost confidence in your kids and validate their efforts.
When your kids have accomplished something or worked hard without giving up, reward them with simple acts to make them feel appreciated ❤️ and continue adopting a growth mindset.
Explore New Things
When trying something new, whether an experience or a hobby, kids require a lot of courage and determination to keep trying until they can get the hang of it and not back out.
Trying new activities can help kids improve and get better at something out of their comfort zone by being growth-oriented and focused despite the struggles.
Make a Visual Board
Pin fixed mindset phrase cards on a bulletin board. Encourage kids to rephrase those phrases and pin cards with more growth-oriented ones 📌 to help kids change their mindset with the choice of words.
The bulletin board is a reminder to adopt a good mindset that will help them progress.
Embrace the “Yet”
Replace the word “can’t” associated with negative thoughts with a positive “yet” for kids to change their outlook.
Encourage kids to use the word “yet” as they discuss unfinished goals to reinforce the idea that their dreams can be achieved with effort, perseverance, and a strong growth-oriented mindset.
The main goal of incorporating growth mindset activities for kids is to make them confident in facing challenges in their stride and allow them the freedom to fail and learn from them.
The above list of activities to develop a growth mindset has played an essential part in helping my son cultivate a positive approach toward learning and failure and become more confident in his potential.
Please comment below if you liked these activities and would try them at home with your kids. 😄
I’m a former teacher with a background in child development and a passion for creating engaging and educational activities for children. I strongly understand child development and know how to create activities to help children learn and grow. Spare time, I enjoy spending time with my family, reading, and volunteering in my community.