With an emphasis on STEM education in schools, young girls begin to have an idea that math and science skills are based on one’s natural ability. A fixed mindset is the belief that one possesses an ability that comes naturally. Many girls, starting at the elementary level tend to interpret a lack of skill for being dumb, and therefore, give up on difficult subjects like math and science. On the other hand, a fluid theory of intelligence, or growth mindset is when a student values effort and understands that these “abilities” come from hard work and taking on new challenges. Students in a growth mindset see intelligence as something that can be developed overtime, while every learning opportunity, challenge, and failure is seen as an important step to becoming more knowledgeable. As a teacher, promoting a growth mindset in the classroom is key for student success; praising and encouraging students through the process of learning is more valuable then giving a grade for the final product. This thesis not only researched the differences between a growth versus fixed mindset, but also the value of fluid theories of intelligence, and the effects on elementary aged girls. This thesis includes a children’s book that promotes the idea of a growth mindset with a protagonist who learns to see the importance of persevering, working hard, and attaining success. With the picturebook intended for elementary aged students, its hope is to bring awareness to students and teachers that having a growth mindset mentality is important.

Thesis Completion




Thesis Chair/Advisor

Buchoff, Rita


Bachelor of Science (B.S.)


College of Education and Human Performance


Teaching, Learning, and Leadership

Degree Program

Elementary Education


Orlando (Main) Campus



Access Status

Open Access

Release Date

August 2016