Activity 3: Mistakes as puzzle pieces

Welcome back!

In our previous activity, we learned that we have two voices in our heads: the growth mindset voice and the fixed mindset voice.
In this lesson, we will learn how to boost the growth mindset voice and use our mistakes to help us learn and grow.


Did you flinch when you read the word? Maybe just a little bit? Mistakes are a natural part of the learning process, and how we react to them can be either harmful or helpful. Read and reflect on the story below where Thinky Pinky makes some mistakes.
Thinky Pinky is learning about US history and loves it. He imagines himself being a pilgrim on the Mayflower or standing next to George Washington in the fight for American independence.
Thinky Pinky light bulb
While taking his US history test, Thinky Pinky was so excited he raced through the questions.
When he got his test back, he didn’t do so well.
Thinky Pinky is sad.
When he saw the low grade on his test, Thinky Pinky was really disappointed. He had spent so much time studying, and he did poorly because he was rushing and made silly mistakes. Thinky Pinky’s initial thought was that he would never do well in history and that he was a bad test taker.

Take a moment to reflect.

Thinky Pinky thought, “Maybe I'm just a bad test taker.”
What kind of mindset is Thinky Pinky in? A growth mindset or a fixed mindset? Why?
Thinky Pinky is using a __ mindset because __.

Mistakes can be discouraging.

Thinky Pinky talked to his friend, Mia. She told him that he shouldn’t get upset about his mistake since mistakes are learning opportunities and just a part of the learning process. Instead of getting discouraged or giving up, he should reflect on his mistakes, see why he's making those mistakes, and then think of ways that he could avoid making the mistakes again.
Sad Thinky Pinky talking to Mia
After talking to Mia, Thinky Pinky reflected on his mistakes and reread the questions that he had missed. He realized that he had made silly mistakes, such as misreading the question or bubbling in the wrong bubble! He also realized that silly mistakes didn’t define him. He just needed to slow down to read the questions correctly and check his work multiple times before turning the test in.
Through talking to Mia and reflecting on his mistake, Thinky Pinky turned his mistake into something good. He reflected and reviewed his mistakes to learn a valuable lesson and created a plan so that he wouldn’t repeat the same mistakes again.
He did better on his next test by reading the directions, taking his time, and double checking his work.
He also learned an important lesson about mistakes! You can learn a lot from a mistake if you take the time to think about why it happened and what you could do differently to get it right next time.
Happy Thinky Pinky
You have completed part 1 of 3 for this activity.
These activities are part of the LearnStorm 2018 program and you will earn a badge and LearnStorm progress for your class for completing all 3 parts of an activity.