Over the holiday break I noticed several ideas and suggestions for lessons on setting goals and making resolutions and choosing one little word. Some were even focused on creating lesson plans which guided students through setting goals and making resolutions like this one and this one. While I’m not really one for making new year resolutions, I did find value in the concepts put forth by these aforementioned blog posts. I gave each of them some thought. I pondered and I jotted down ideas and I pondered some more. Then, I seriously tried to set some goals for myself. If you clicked on one of the previous links, you noticed that I did wind up setting a few personal goals. Then, I took a wee little bit of time and considered how I might approach this concept if I were returning to the classroom in a few days. What would I do to help my students settle in and get focused to persevere toward the end of the school year? Here are the concepts I landed upon:
- Set a couple of professional goals for myself and commit to them by writing them down. I wouldn’t just write down a word or a phrase, I would use some of the suggestions I saw in the blog posts I read and flesh them out a little bit.
- I would not only write these goals down, I would probably also write down my thoughts and ideas for where I brainstormed so that I could share that process with my students. I would want to have my thinking be visible in order to model what takes place for my students.
- I would do a bit of reflection and make a list or two relating to my reflection. List one would be, what have I done in the past that made me successful to achieving my goals? List two would be, what do I think I need to do to make me successful toward achieving new goals? I might even make a third list; what risks would I like to take at this time?
- I would create a couple of planning templates to share with my students to help guide them if they feel they need a graphic guide. One of them could be something like Orman’s Top 20/Bottom 17. If you would like a ready-made template example of the one shown below, just click HERE. Of course, I would work through the template or something similar to model such planning for my students.
- I would ask students to follow up with brainstorming and creating a plan. Encouraging students perform a bit of deep thinking and refining of their goals. Again, they might need an organizer to guide their thoughts. HERE is an example you might offer if they do. It expounds on the ideas offered from one of the blog posts linked above and encourages students to carefully consider and brainstorm to come up with a plan for making a limited number of their to-do goals a reality. I would also encourage students to do the same with a couple or three of their not-to-do goals a reality. Again, I would certainly model this practice.
Since goal-setting is a natural focus for the beginning of a new year, guiding students to do some thinking and planning for making their goals a reality might be a good way to transition back into thinking and writing. Happy New Year and happy goal setting and planning!