Posted in Learning

Minor Mistakes lead to Major Learning

This is what I have been emphasising to our pupils over the last term, that those who make the most mistakes win! Making mistakes is all part of being at school, of being part of a learning environment, but having a structured framework with which to learn from those mistakes is key to ensuring a successful learning arc. Being clear that getting it wrong is OK, that low threat environment we endeavor to create for all learners will ultimately lead to independent and confident learners, skilled in reflection and adaption when presented with challenging situations. Mary Myatt (@MaryMyatt) postulates in her new book, High Challenge, Low Threat (read in one sitting its that good!), that those moving positively thought their learning journey say to themselves ‘I could have done that better and why didn’t that go so well?’

Modelling to our pupils that to reflect upon or practice and create next steps based on these reflections is essential to their development. Not divulging every minor transgression, but demonstrating enough to them that a doer makes it, a doer makes mistakes. Pragmatically, we know that we can’t afford certain demographics of pupils to make mistakes, our exam sitting masses need to get it right, to display high quality learning skills. But removing the threat of getting it wrong earlier in their learning journey can only serve to benefit them when they face these pressurised situations. Developing the fight response to cancel out any thoughts of flight should be happening at the major transition points of the pupils learning lives.

In terms of developing an clear and coherent transition structure the focus could be on these types of areas, which will all inevitably impact on one another;

  1. Creation of situations and projects that translate across establishments, demonstrating to pupils that they will do things wrong n matter where they are, but the consistent approach is always to learning from it.
  2. To create reciprocal visits between transitioning establishments, modelling these pedagogical points in each location.

Here is an example of our pupils Mistake Wall, a motivational display linked to Dweck’s Mindset materialPicture1

Pencils have rubbers for a reason, the universe wants us to







Assistant Head Teacher, Geographer, all round Educational Enthusiast

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