Habits of Mind

What are Habits of Mind?

Habits of Mind are characteristics of what intelligent people do to problem solve and how they respond when they don’t know the answer.  Research on effective thinking, successful people, and intelligent behavior has shown that these habits contribute to students’ success or failure in mastering standards.


  • Sticking to task at hand

  • Follow through to completion

  • Can and do remain focused

Managing Impulsivity

  • Take time to consider options

  • Think before speaking or acting

  • Remain calm when stressed or challenged

  • Thoughtful and considerate of others

Listening with Understanding and Empathy

  • Pay attention to/don’t dismiss another person’s thoughts, feelings, and ideas

  • Try to put yourself in the other person’s shoes

  • Tell others when you can relate to what they’re expressing

  • Hold thoughts at a distance in order to respect another person’s point of view and feelings

Remaining Open to Continuous Learning

  • Open to new experiences to learn from

  • Proud and humble enough to admit when you don’t know

  • Welcome new information on all subjects

Thinking Interdependently

  • Willing to work with others

  • Welcome others’ input and perspective

  • Abide by the decisions the group makes even if you disagree somewhat

  • Willing to learn from others in reciprocal situations