Start the New Year off right by having a fun brainstorming session with your child about their academic goals. The start of a New Year is the perfect time for your child to reflect on their performance throughout the first semester. It’s also the prime moment to set goals!
Whether you are a four-year-old or a senior graduating high school, setting clear goals is a sure way to build a successful academic future. As stated by Edutopia, “Goal setting can be done at any age—as long as it is age-appropriate. Teaching the skill of goal setting coupled with reflecting and revising goals can give students the self-regulated learning tools for a growth mindset toward academic development.”
Energize, enlighten, and empower your child by facilitating a positive goal-setting session!
Discuss the Positives.
Think of this part of the activity as a warm-up. Sit down with your student and ask them about what they believe they’ve done well so far this school year. Allow them to speak first because this is how you gain knowledge of their true feelings rather than what you just tell them. After they talk about their thoughts, feel free to jump in to tell them about all the things they are doing well in your eyes.
Guide. Don’t Tell.
After you’ve spent time reflecting on what has gone well for your child throughout the first semester, you can ask what they think they could improve on, allowing them to be the first one to speak. Most likely, they already know what subjects and behaviors they may be struggling with in school. Giving your child time to reflect on what they can improve upon will help them internalize their goal. If you tell them what they need to think, they may not develop an internal drive to meet their goal.
Talk It Out.
Once you help your student identify 2-3 clear academic areas, you can ask what they think they can do to improve. If they are struggling to develop these ideas, this is where you can assist.
Keep the conversation light, positive, and helpful. Assist your child in creating clear and actionable “I will…” statements that describe what they will do to improve in reading, math, art, or whatever subject.
Jot down the goals and get excited about them, reminding your child that you are there to help them achieve their mission.
Start Right Away.
Think of something your child can do that night or the next morning to take a small step towards their goal. This will solidify the concept that the goals are important.
For example, let’s say your child’s goal is to read a little bit each day to raise their reading level. You can prompt them to read for just ten minutes before they go to bed. Or, surprise them by reading a book with them first thing in the morning.
The Wake Up, Little Dreamer picture book is a great way to wake up your child and reinforce their reading goal. If the goals are more art-focused, Sign Up your child to join author-artist Sterling Freeman as he guides them through fun art lessons online!
Don’t forget to revisit your child’s goals. For younger children, revisit their goals at least once a week.
Remind them that it’s okay to miss the mark sometimes as long as they continue to try.
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