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Habits of Mind : Part One

Our school district is looking into taking the leap to become more dependent on PBL (Problem-Based Learning). District heads felt that one of the best building blocks for this would be to have us implement the Habits of Mind from Costa and Kallick. I, among others, was a little flustered with yet another new thing that the district still wasn’t sure how to implement. We simply want to know what to expect, how to teach it in our classrooms, but we keep getting confirmations that ‘It’s going to be great!’ without any answers.However, the Habits of Mind are something that I feel can benefit any school.

When you read anything from Costa and Kallick about the Habits of Mind, it can seem a little overwhelming, but in short, the goal is to help create successful students and human beings. Each one of these is a habit or mindset that will help drive a student to keep trying, to try a different approach, to be a good listener, and to ultimately help them be able to make good choices no matter the situation. For our district, each grade starting in Kindergarten focuses on 1-2 Habits of Mind until they have all 16. Kindergarten starts with Managing Impulsivity, whereas my 6th graders were focused on Metacognition and Persisting.