Friday, June 12, 2015

A Motto to Live By!

A Motto to Live By...

I chose this Ted Talk because I am a huge fan of Carol Dweck (thanks to John McDermott, my pedagogy professor, for introducing me to her book) and I think all teachers need to live by her words.  Her book is an easy read and it worth your summer reading list!

Three traits were chosen from Jason Ohler’s rubric to use in order to critique this story (each worth 10 points):
1.       Content Understanding
2.       Media Grammar
3.       Media Application

1.  Content Understanding- did the speaker understand the content?
Comments:   Yes, the speaker understood the content very well, as she is the author of a book on the subject.  Some of her researcher is older but she followed up with more recent research when she paired with scientists from the University of Washington. 
Score: 10

2.  Media Grammar- how ‘bumpy’ was the story?
Comments: Compared to other talks I have seen, this one was very smooth.  You could tell that the speaker has given many talks and was very comfortable speaking in front of an audience.  She spoke slowly and deliberately and gave proper wait time for the audience to view the screen and soak in her words.
Score: 10

3.  Media Application- was the media appropriate for the story?
Comments:  As much as I love Carol Dweck, someone needs to help her with her power points!  I appreciate simplicity and speakers who don’t read directly from their power points word for word, but a few visuals never hurt anyone.  She had some interesting pictures of the brain and neurons but not enough to keep my interest.  A few times the words on the screen were sideways which isn’t the easiest to read.  Overall, I think she needs to stick to the talks and her younger interns need to make the presentations.
Score: 6

Overall Score: 26/30

Other Comments: I teach her philosophy of the growth mindset to my thirds graders and it is amazing to see how their minds remember to say the word yet.  I haven’t quite seen the transformation of worst to first as Carol Dweck discussed but I do think it is good for kids to think with a growth mindset.  One way to make this talk better would be a better visual presentation as I mentioned earlier.  Also, she is a little dry in her speeches.  Talking about brain research isn’t the most exciting topic, but to a group of educators, what she has to say is exciting.  She could be more enthusiastic when talking of the successes she is seeing.


  1. Emily, I am so glad I decided to view this post. I'm not a teacher, but I love this idea of the power of 'Yet'. In my own, adult, life I often feel like I am failing. As we are learning about 'new' literacies this week, I am all too aware at how illiterate I am in most of today's social networks. After watching this Ted Talk, I will adopt this growth mindset and be satisfied with the fact that I am 'not yet' literate in these areas, but will continue to learn and try so that I can one day gain the knowledge to be literate in them, well some of them.

  2. Thanks for your really is a powerful concept and makes total sense when you think about it! I tell my sister all the time (she is a new mom) 'don't tell her she's smart, reward the effort' :) Her book really is a good, quick read if you want to learn more. She has a chapter on relationships, sports, education, etc. I agree with you that I felt illiterate with all this new technology we are using in this class but I already feel like it's getting easier!