As we work with the Habits of Mind in our classrooms, we should focus on helping students become more masterful and to develop more mature Habits of Mind. Merely setting tasks that require using the Habits of Mind is not enough. Our curriculum design and our pedagogy must allow students to improve and develop their Habits of Mind.
In our work, Art Costa, Bena Kallick, and I have identified five dimensions in which the Habits of Mind can be developed. These five dimensions are fully described in Learning and Leading with Habits of Mind (Anderson, Costa, & Kallick, 2008). Essentially we argue that for students to develop their Habits of Mind, teachers need to be engaging them in tasks that allow them to (1) explore the meaning of the habits by having more complex understandings and being exposed to a wider range of examples and analogies, (2) expand their capacities by developing a wide repertoire of skills and strategies, (3) extend the value they place on the habits, (4) build commitment toward using and developing Habits of Mind, and (5) increase alertness to situations when it is appropriate to use (or not use) a particular Habit of Mind. In this chapter, I focus on classroom strategies that help teachers develop a student's ability to become increasingly alert to opportunities to apply the Habits of Mind.