“The brain grows most by getting questions wrong, not right.” Failiure Part 2

Salman Khan of Khan Academy wrote the above statement, and also, “If society as a whole begins to embrace the struggle of learning, there is no end to what that could mean for global human potential,”

Miami_Music_Project_-_Flickr_-_Knight_Foundation_(10)

Picture Courtesy of Knight Foundation, licensed under Creative Commons

EMBRACE STRUGGLE.

In this Huffington Post article, the author cites research on how we praise our children and the effect it has on our children. The researcher Carol Dweck, has been working on this research since the 1960s, and this information probably isn’t new to you, but here is what we know: when you praise children for being smart, they attribute their skills to innate ability, but when you praise them for their hard work, they attribute skills to perseverance and practice. Children who do the latter are more likely to keep trying a task until they get it right and can accomplish more throughout their lives because of their mindset.

Next time you are ready to praise your child or student: stop and think- what are you praising? Instead of saying “you’re so musical,” “I like how you practiced playing some parts softly and some loudly. The dynamics you added made your performance more musical.”

Challenge your music student- let them experience failure- and then praise them for their work and diligence, not their skill or accomplishment. This way you will grow a musician.

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