Wednesday, January 25, 2023

Learning from Our Mistakes

In There are no stupid mistakes from •Seth Godin's Blog by Seth Godin shares,

“There are mistakes. These are moments when reality teaches us something.

And there’s stupid. This is what happens when we refuse to learn from our mistakes.”

Most of the time, my students are afraid of making mistakes. In fact, most people are. I feel like it is the elephant in the room and I try to address it. I explain that even I make mistakes (and very often too). The reason that some of our peers may ridicule us when we make a mistake is that they are afraid they will make the same one or they have already made the same mistake. Those that aren’t afraid are the ones who will support you and try to help you overcome that mistake.

An error should not be a terror. Instead, it should be an opportunity for learning. We do most of our best learning because we have made a mistake. We try hard not to repeat the mistake and change the way we are doing something.

Once I can help my students get over the fear of making a mistake, they are more open to trying new things and taking risks. I play the game that my husband does with me when I’m afraid of making a mistake. I ask the question: What is the worst thing that can happen? As long as it doesn’t cause bodily harm and isn’t anything illegal, why not give it a try.

I think it also helps if you know that you will have some kind of support or backup if you do make a mistake. I try to let my students know that they are not alone. If a mistake is made, I will be there to help them try to figure out what went wrong and how to change it so they can try again. It is through these mistakes and attempts that will help them be successful. As they become more confident with this process in the classroom, they can apply it to their lives outside of the classroom.

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