Brain Builders Workshop

Unlock your students’ full potential with Brain Builders Workshop: Teaching Motivation to Middle School Students, the essential guide for middle school teachers seeking to inspire motivation, cultivate a growth mindset, and nurture a positive attitude toward learning. Written by an experienced educator with two decades of experience, this book is a treasure trove of practical techniques, real-world insights, and engaging activities designed to empower your students to thrive.

You will discover:

  • Innovative Motivational Strategies: Learn how to ignite your students’ passion for learning with dynamic and effective methods that foster intrinsic motivation.

  • Growth Mindset Mastery: Uncover the secrets to instilling a growth mindset in your students, enabling them to embrace challenges, persevere through setbacks, and celebrate their progress.

  • Positive Attitude Practices: Explore actionable steps to help students develop a positive outlook on learning, transforming your classroom into a vibrant, supportive environment.

  • Engaging Activities and Tools: Access a wealth of ready-to-use activities, handouts, and resources to immediately implement in your classroom to make learning fun and impactful.

The full book is available on Amazon for $4.99 (Kindle) or $16.99 (paperback). Click here to see it on Amazon.

Below is a sample of some of the lessons that you will find in the book. 

student motivation

Unlocking Student Motivation in Education

In the educational landscape, motivation represents the driving force behind students’ desire to engage, persist, and succeed in their learning endeavors. It encompasses the reasons or goals that underpin a student’s actions towards academic tasks, whether it’s the pursuit of knowledge, the satisfaction of mastering a new skill, or the

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Roger Bannister Story

Overcoming the Impossible: The Roger Bannister Story

Roger Bannister’s story is a testament to the power of determination, resilience, and self-belief. Students are constantly faced with their own “four-minute miles” – challenges that may initially seem insurmountable. These could be academic hurdles, personal goals, or even social barriers. Bannister’s journey teaches us that with perseverance and belief

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Marie Curie's Life

Unyielding Determination: Learning from Marie Curie’s Life

Today, we will explore the remarkable life of Marie Curie, a trailblazer in science whose journey embodies the essence of perseverance, passion, and innovation. Curie’s story is about science and overcoming adversity, breaking barriers, and contributing to the greater good. Through her life, we will learn valuable lessons about resilience,

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find inspiration

Find Inspiration: Toni Morrison’s Path to Literary Icon

In this motivational story for students, we embark on an exploratory journey into the life of Toni Morrison, an iconic figure in American literature. We will trace her path from the humble beginnings in Lorain, Ohio, to her rise as a Nobel Prize-winning author. By understanding Morrison’s background, challenges, and

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Gabriel Iglesias's inspiring lesson

Overcoming Obstacles with Humor: The Gabriel Iglesias Story

Let’s explore the work an inspiring man named Gabriel Iglesias, a comedian known as “Fluffy,” whose path to success was filled with challenges, hard work, and laughter. This lesson will highlight Iglesias’s resilience and encourage students to reflect on their own lives and how humor can be a powerful tool

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flow lesson plan

Unlocking the Secrets of Motivation and Flow Lesson Plan

In this lesson, we’re embarking on a journey to discover what fuels our actions and how we can harness the power of our inner drive to achieve greater satisfaction and success in everything we do. Through understanding the concepts of extrinsic and intrinsic motivation, and the magical state of flow,

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Overcoming Obstacles lesson plan

Overcoming Obstacles Lesson Plan: The Power of Resilience

In this lesson, we will embark on an inspirational journey through the lives of three remarkable individuals: Thomas Edison, Stephen Hawking, and Kodi Lee. Each of these figures faced significant challenges but climbed their personal mountains to achieve greatness. Through their stories, we will explore the themes of persistence, resilience,

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power of purpose

The Power of Purpose Middle School Lesson Plan

In this lesson, we will dive into the fascinating world of neuroscience to uncover how our brain’s response to purpose—our “Why”—can significantly impact our creativity, resilience, and determination. Understanding this connection can be a powerful motivator, helping us see the direct link between our learning, education, and personal goals. Through

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Joy in the Learning Journey

Joy in the Learning Journey: Valuing the Process

Welcome to an exciting exploration of finding joy in the journey of learning! Often, we focus on the end goal, whether it’s acing a test, winning a competition, or mastering a new skill. However, true fulfillment comes from cherishing each step along the way. This lesson will guide you through

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teaching growth mindset middle school

Introduction to Teaching Growth Mindset in Middle School

Welcome to our exploration of one of the most transformative concepts in education today: the growth mindset. This approach to learning and personal development has the power to change how we teach, learn, and perceive our abilities. But what exactly is a growth mindset, and how does it differ from

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growth mindset lesson plan

A Journey from Fixed to Growth Mindset Lesson Plan

Today’s lesson embarks on an insightful journey exploring the concepts of fixed and growth mindsets. By understanding these mindsets, students will learn how their attitudes towards challenges, effort, and feedback shape their learning and personal growth. This lesson helps us recognize where we stand and helps us unlock our potential

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Neuroplasticity for Middle School

Neuroplasticity for Middle School: Your Brain’s Potential

Welcome to an extraordinary adventure that will take you inside the most complex and fascinating structure known to humankind: the brain. In this lesson, we will explore the concept of neuroplasticity for middle school students, and how it allows our brains to adapt, change, and grow throughout our lives. Prepare

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Reframing Failure

The Power of Reframing Failure in Middle School Classes

In this lesson, we explore the transformative power of reframing failure, understanding it not as a setback but as a vital step toward success. We’ll explore what a growth mindset entails and how it can change our approach to challenges, using real-life examples of notable figures who turned their failures

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power of effort

Unlocking Potential: The Power of Effort and Persistence

Welcome to a journey that transcends the ordinary and propels you into the realm of extraordinary achievements. In this lesson, we will explore the undeniable power of effort and persistence—your secret weapons in the quest to realize your dreams. Imagine embarking on an adventure where each step forward is fueled

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SMART Goals for Middle School Students

The Ultimate Guide: SMART Goals for Middle School Students

In this lesson, we’ll unlock the secret to turning dreams or vague ideas into achievable steps by learning about SMART Goals for middle school students. This powerful approach helps students define their ambitions clearly and create a roadmap to success, ensuring that every step taken is a step closer to

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Growth Mindset Celebration

Embracing Change: A Fantastic Growth Mindset Celebration

This lesson caps off a week of cultivating a growth mindset, guiding students to reflect on their personal development and achievements. Our focus today is not just on celebrating where we’ve arrived but appreciating the journey it took to get here. Students will see tangible evidence of their progress by

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positive attitude toward learning

Teaching and Fostering a Positive Attitude Toward Learning

In the journey of education, the role of educators extends far beyond imparting knowledge and preparing students for tests. One of the most significant and enduring impacts a teacher can have is in shaping students’ attitudes toward learning. This is especially true during the middle school years, a formative period

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psychology of interest

The Secrets of Learning: Explore the Psychology of Interest

Have you ever been so engrossed in a topic that time seemed to fly by? Whether it’s dinosaurs, outer space, or the latest video game, certain subjects have the power to captivate our attention and ignite our imagination. This lesson will explore the psychological underpinnings of our interests, uncovering the

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Curiosity in Learning

Exploring the Wonders of Curiosity in Learning

In today’s lesson, we will embark on a journey fueled by our natural curiosity about the world around us. Curiosity drives us to explore, ask questions, and seek answers, leading to profound learning experiences. By harnessing our inquisitive nature, we can uncover mysteries, understand diverse perspectives, and connect meaningfully with

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Open-ended questions

Teaching the Impressive Power of Open-Ended Questions

In a world teeming with curiosity and endless information, the ability to ask the right questions is more valuable than ever. This lesson is designed to guide students through the art of crafting and utilizing open-ended questions to deepen their understanding of any subject matter. By the end of this

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Transform a boring lesson

Transform a Boring Lesson into Something Exciting!

This lesson should be a lot of fun but you might need a bit of a thick skin while middle school students re-work lessons that they previously found uninteresting. By allowing groups of students to craft new lessons for their classmates, students will discover the joy of learning (and teaching)

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Personal Interest Projects

Personal Interest Projects to Boost Success and Creativity

As we approach the culmination of our personal interest project, it’s time to reflect on the journey we’ve embarked upon and bring our visions to life. Over the next two to three class periods, students will have the opportunity to complete their projects, integrating their personal passions with academic subjects.

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Brain Builders Workshop motivational strategies

Motivational Handouts for the Brain Builders Workshop

Welcome to the resource hub for Brain Builders Workshop: Teaching Motivation to Middle School Students! Here, you’ll find the downloadable / print-ready documents and handouts associated with the Brain Builders motivational lessons. These resources are tailored to complement the strategies and insights you’ve gained from the book and various blog

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teaching memory skills

The Vital Role of Memory Skills in Middle School Success

Memory skills are essential tools for academic success and everyday life. Educators can significantly improve student outcomes by teaching memory techniques. In the next several Brain Builders Workshops, we will focus on developing memory skills for middle school students. These will primarily be in the form of classroom lessons that

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power of yet

Unlocking The Potential of Yet in Learning and Growth

Welcome to a journey that transcends the boundaries of traditional learning! In this lesson, we’ll explore the transformative power of a seemingly small word: “yet.” As we navigate through various subjects and life lessons, we often encounter hurdles that seem insurmountable. However, by understanding and applying the concept of “yet,”

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