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Mindset project update: researchers start your engines!

February 2, 2011
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We’ve been making some huge strides with our Mindset Research Project recently.

Some quick updates:

  • Last wednesday, A and I presented a proposal for the study to parents in our Junior High. Here’s the slides from the presentation we gave.

    The presentation was incredibly well received. Parents asked some thoughtful questions, and we even got a response from one via email.

    Hi A,
    After I attended the Parley with B last week, I have been meaning to
    email you and share my excitement with you about this project.
    Personally, I am very interested in behavioral research and spent many
    years in regulatory compliance for clinical research. I am so pleased
    that W is doing this program as it is a wonderful way for
    students to learn how to conduct a study and aggregate data within the
    framework of following protocols, regulations, policies etc. If you
    ever need just a helping hand I would be willing. I am so happy to
    hear you and John are leading this and that the possibilities are
    endless for research at W!

  • We’ve also put together the following letter to parents describing our project.

So now, we’re training the students on our research script, and aiming to start the experiment in the last week of February.

A couple of days ago, a student emailed me to say he hadn’t had his chance to work on part of the grant and was wondering if there was anything he could do. And then it sort of hit me—when was the last time I ever had a student in class volunteer to write anything associated with a “lab report?”. We’ve got 40 kids, doing real science, working as part of a huge collaborative effort, with no promises of extra credit, grades or any other motivation other than the desire to be a part of this new research team. It’s awesome.

Six months into this project, I’m really starting to get amazed by how much easier this is to do than I thought it would be. Of course, it helps to be working with an awesome research psychologist like A, but getting kids to do real research is nowhere near as daunting as I thought it would be. So if you’re reading this, and thinking about the same thing—let this be a push. We would love to have another research team at another school to collaborate with.

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