Now that your child has begun to settle into the new school year, it’s a great time to work with him or her on setting goals for the upcoming ten months — both personal and academic. Doing this will not only help keep your child accountable and motivated, it will give the two of you some quality time together. Better yet, use this opportunity to become a role model by setting goals for yourself as well.
While the goals are dependent on your individual child and his or her values and priorities, there are some things to keep in mind no matter what you both decide. Most importantly, the goal should be SMART, meaning that it is specific and measurable. Edutopia explains:
S = Specific
M = Measurable
A = Attainable
R = Relevant, Rigorous, Realistic, and Results Focused
T = Timely and Trackable
Let’s look at a few examples of SMART goals for students at all grade levels:
- I will read [number] books for fun this school year.
- I will learn [number] new vocabulary words a week.
- I will practice my [sport, instrument, etc.] [number] times a week.
- I will get a B+ or higher in [subject(s)].
- I will call [my grandma] once a week.
- I will give at least [number] compliments to someone each day.
Once the goals are set, be sure to celebrate all the small “wins” your child (and you) experience along the way. These acknowledgements will work wonders for building confidence and keeping motivation strong. In fact, it is often helpful to break down the SMART goals into smaller tasks, making the larger one much more achievable.
MindTools explains how goal setting is beneficial for students and adults alike:
Setting goals gives you long-term vision and short-term motivation. It focuses your [attention] and helps you to organize your time and your resources so that you can make the very most of your life.
By setting sharp, clearly defined goals, you can measure and take pride in the achievement of those goals, and you'll see forward progress … You will also raise your self-confidence, as you recognize your own ability and competence in achieving the goals that you’ve set.
Ready to start? Pinterest offers tons of worksheets and activities designed to make setting, and keeping track of, SMART goals fun!
What personal and academic goals have you and your child set for him or her this academic year? Let us know on our social media pages.