“The best gift an educator can give is to get their students to be self-reflective.”- Randy Pausch
As we begin the New Year I wanted to do something with the boys that helped them mentally prepare for the coming school year.
Our family follows a growth mind-set and we try to implement these values in our daily lives. This means we are really big on affirmations, positive thinking and gratitude. Previously I have informally chatted to the boys about setting goals for themselves. At school they do fill in worksheets and set goals but I felt like doing something with them that included reflecting on the year that passed.
Reflecting is an important aspect of growth, as you need to know where you’ve come from and how much you have gained in order to set into motion where you would like to be or what you would like to achieve. It’s is also a wonderful way to allow them to recognise their strengths and weaknesses.
“When we provide students the time and place for reflection, we empower them as learners and thinkers. Reflection on a lesson or on their own progress also allows them to build skills in critical thinking that they can apply when they are problem-solving and learning on their own.” (Kristine Scharaldi)
Goal setting is important as it serves to remind the children of what they would like to spend more time on. It is vital that these goals are ‘SMART’ : specific, measureable, attainable, relevant and time bound. As a parent it also helps that you know how to direct your child when he/she needs assistance. Reflecting and goal setting also encourages mindfulness which is just another added benefit.
According to Courtney E. Ackerman, MSc. Researcher, aside from helping children believe in themselves and setting them up for success academically, children benefit from goal setting in the following ways:
- Improving self-image
- Increasing awareness of one’s strengths
- Increasing awareness of one’s weaknesses
- Providing an experience of success
- Facilitating effective visualization
- Clarifying the path ahead
- Encouraging prioritization
- Defining reality and separating it from wishful thinking
- Building responsibility for one’s self
- Improving decision making.
For this reason I have designed and shared the printable I have used with my boys and hope that you find it useful too. Please feel free to share and remember to tag me @bibisblog_za
Happy New Year everyone!!