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Summerwood Primary School 16 Habits of the Mind Banner


16 Habits of the mind will be consciously developed in 2023. These habits aim to developed deeper thinking and understanding of  learning. It means that we value one way of thinking over another. It requires  skillfulness to employ. Habits of the mind attend to values, inclinations, sensitivity, capability and commitment.


Choosing to use a pattern of productive intellectual behaviours


Feeling the tendency toward employing a pattern of intellectual behaviours


Knowing when and how appropriate it will be to employ a pattern of behaviours


Processing the correct basic skills when we carry through the behaviours.


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Persistence is all about not giving up and achieving whatever your goal is. Over the years, there have been several examples of this. When it comes to developing this skill, the best thing to do in this scenario is to pull from these examples.


How this helps with learning is that it encourages us to continue learning and working towards our goals.

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Remember that habits of mind are designed to find problems that people wouldn’t find on the first go. This is key because whenever we see problems, we are quick to act on impulse. We don’t bother to think about other options.

This habit of mind helps us to hesitate, but only to consider other possible scenarios. In other words, you want to be practicing patience when coming up with solutions and deciding how to act.

How this helps in a learning situation is it pushes us to weigh our options when presented with a problem.

Think before you act. Remain calm.

Managing Impulsivity

3. LISTENING       

Many of us listen in order to reply rather than listen to understand and relate to the person. In conversations, we can find ourselves comparing, judging, soothing or offering advice rather than listening and understanding a message.

To improve those skills, catch yourself whenever you do those sorts of things. This can also help in learning because when we are listening to understand, we have a deeper knowledge of concepts, and the problems.

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Listening with empathy
Summerwood Primary School Habits of the Mind


We all have opinions and views of reality and sometimes our views seep into everything that we see and what we read and learn. For this specific habit of mind, we need to learn to look at things from different angles.

That’s not to say to look at everything with skepticism, but rather to use a different view than our own or the original speakers. Place yourself in different shoes and walk around in them as they say.

How this applies to learning environments is that when we use different angles, there’s a deeper understanding. Knowing one side of a problem is good, but knowing how both parties view the problem, is even better.

Thinkng Flexibly


Otherwise known as thinking about thinking, developing this habit comes down to that. It’s important that you’re aware of your thinking process.

How you do that comes down to charting a map. A good example is drawing up a diagram of relationships. It’s a map that details the relationship between a want and a need as well as a gesture and a need to gesture.

Be aware of your own thoughts, strategies, feelings and actions and their effects on others.

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Think about your thinking

6. STRIVE FOR       

This habit of mind is ensuring that what you are doing is accurate. How would you know if you’re doing it right without someone telling you it’s correct?

While you don’t want to be reliant on people’s opinions, it is still helpful to get others to check what you’re doing is proper and that you are making progress.

This is why it helps to have at least two or three people review your work before it moves on. Provided that reviewing is possible.

Frequent reading also helps to improve accuracy.

Summerwood Primary School Habits of the Mind
Strive for Accuracy
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Learning stems from presenting problems and asking questions. For some generations, this is second nature as many aren’t afraid to go to google and figure things out. Developing this habit stems from this as well.

Use your knowledge and past experience as data sources. Remember that many experiences are related.

That or if you are in the middle of something, you could write questions down on post-it notes.

Find problems to solve.



Another part of the habits of mind is that these develop through experiences. These experiences can be recent or they can stem from the past. Recalling previous knowledge and applying it to new situations can have it’s merits.

By no means is it always the best solution on the table, but knowing what was done in the past can add a deeper understanding. Either way pulling from an area you’re already comfortable in can improve learning.

Apply what you have learned in real-life situations.

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Applying past knowledge
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This one goes hand in hand with listening with understanding and empathy. The idea behind this habit of mind is to speak directly to people and avoid being vague, abstract or using imprecisions.

Examples of these words are always, all, everybody, celebrities, technology.

It’s not that using these words is bad or improper. Being able to speak directly and to think with a narrow focus helps in approaching a problem. Just because one piece of technology is faulty, doesn’t make all technology faulty.


When addressing a problem and communicating, we need to focus on the specific point first.

Strive for accuracy and clarity in both written and oral form.

Thinkng with clarity


What this means is looking at various sources when it comes to learning.

Gather data through using all your senses: taste, touch, smell, hearing and sight.

To know the quality of a cold drink, it must be drunk. to know a role in a play it must be acted, to know a game it must be played. to know a dance it must be moved, to know a goal it must be visualized.

Arts and Music can have a profound impact on improved mental functioning.


The quality of the source is important but pulling from sources like sensory data, blogs, and other third-party sources can have its merits.

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Gather data through senses
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Creative people imagine alternative solutions form various angles.

They imagine what can be added to, or how a familiar concept  can be changed to adopt an original concept.

Creative people take calculated risks.

They are open to positive criticism. They allow others to judge their projects and appreciate and respond to feedback.

They constantly strive for perfection. 

They have a "can do" attitude.

Creating and Imagining

      AND AWE

Effective people have not only an "I can do" attitude, but also an "I enjoy" attitude. They enjoy figuring things out by themselves and are lifelong learnings.


If you see learning as a chore, chances are you won’t be retaining any information. It’s important that we have a passion for the subject and that we’re eager to learn and indulge in the topic.

Responding with awe and wonderment is one of the side effects when we are interested in a topic.

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Responding with wonderment
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For this habit of mind, this prioritizes how we see failure and when to take risks. It’s important to see failure as an opportunity to grow rather than something to get punished for.

They place themselves in situations where they do not not know what the outcome will be.

They know that all risks are not worth taking. If they decide on a risk, it is a well considered one.

It is a cross between intuition, drawing on past knowledge and a sense of meeting new challenges

Taking risks


Humour is best found at laughing at oneself and laughing with others.

Humour helps one to enjoy completing a task or appreciating a process.

Using humour initiates using more humour.

One should remember that there should always be compassion in using humour.

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Finding humour


Today this is easier to achieve thanks in part to social media. Because we are all connected, it’s easy for us to connect our thoughts with other people.


Every single day, more content is published and shared and consuming that can help us in this area.

When we collaborate, we more at ease and we draw more energy from one another.

Powerful innovations are the product of working together,

Working in groups helps us to develop the ability to justify ideas and test the probability of success.

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Thnking interdependently
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The last of the habits of mind is learning continuously. As the habit suggests, learning is constant and old ideas need to be revised. After all, we know how problematic it can be when methods or views are dated.

Learn from experiences. Have pride in your work, but remain humble as you grow. Admit what you do not know. Then work on what you do not know.

The world is on the move to growing and improving day after day — online and offline. It’s up to us to stay up to speed by developing ourselves too:

Remaining open to learning
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