How to TeamMastermind
Each TeamMastermind Mindwinder has nine steps. You can either present the lesson in its entirety (you’ll need about an hour), or you can present it over the course of a week. To learn more about these options, click here.
1—Mastermind the Model
To help reinforce key concepts as
your students learn them, you should begin each Mindwinder by
diagramming the Team–Mastermind
model. Your model will evolve as the
children integrate more concepts.
Draw a large
triangle on the board.
triangle as the shape most suited to
skills because of its
strength in engineered structures. Show pictures of bridges or towers
the students to notice the triangles.
three corners of the shape and tell the
students that these are the cornerstones, or foundation stones, of TeamMastermind.
bottom right-hand corner as “creativity,” the
bottom left-hand corner as “teamwork,” and the top point as “problem
that these are the three cornerstones to building the habits of TeamMastermind.
lesson unfolds, words and concepts will arise and
become “bricks” in the structure. Draw these brick shapes inside of the
triangle and label them appropriately using words from the day’s
For example, after the children learn the concept of “personal
write that inside a brick.
Be sure to
repeat the bricks they have already
integrated before adding new concepts. As the year (and the curriculum)
progresses, the triangle will become filled with bricks and concepts.
Take the time to diagram before each
Mindwinder to ensure that
the students retain the information from prior sessions.
2—Mastermind the Discussion
Next, you’ll read an essay that introduces the theme to be explored. This essay is a springboard for your own ideas, personal knowledge, and insight. We recommend that you understand it well enough to present the theme as a sort of animated monologue — and to add bits of wisdom and personal experience as you see fit. Kids prefer material that seems “off the cuff.” This approach also allows you to make eye contact with students and to gauge interest levels and energy levels in the room.
3—Mastermind the Story
Once you’ve introduced the topic at hand, it’s helpful to have a bit of corroboration. It’s especially validating when Dr. Seuss, Shel Silverstein, the Brothers Grimm, and Aesop seemingly agree with the premise! At least one reading is suggested with each seminar, although you should feel free to substitute different readings as you see fit. As with the discussion, an animated storytelling demeanor helps keep the children engaged and focused on the concept