We all know what back to school means. It’s the rush of getting supply lists fulfilled from Target, it’s the painful readjustment to a somewhat normal sleep schedule, and it’s the thrill of a completely new grade and new chapter. In all the hubbub that goes on, having a moment for some self-reflection is super important to help your child feel all the more prepared. With all the emotions and feelings that they might be experiencing, setting some goals can help get their mind in the right place.
Whether going back to elementary school or starting fresh in middle school, New Vision Charter School has some goal-setting guidance and ideas to help get everyone in your family ready for the school year — and be able to take a breath or two in the process. Learn more in our blog, and enroll your child with New Vision Charter School today! Visit our enrollment page to get started.
Why Set Goals?
Anytime people want to be successful, they usually start to visualize or imagine what that success looks like, as well as what they’ll need to do to get there. Having a great school year makes not only a huge difference in your child’s life, but in your family’s life as well. Taking some time to think about what your child wants this school year to look like is instrumental in their success, because it’s establishing a positive mindset where they are in control of the year ahead.
Establishing goals sets intentionality, it sets purpose, and it drives motivation — all of which are valuable to practice at every other stage of life. However, we recognize that for some children and families, narrowing down a goal can be challenging. Our charter elementary and middle school has a few ideas for you to consider — feel free to discuss these goals with your family, take them for yourself, or use them to drive conversation!
Work on Perseverance
This is a bit of a broad goal, but it’s a great one for anyone to implement and grow from. Children often get “stuck” in their school days or lessons, and it’s understandable, because learning is hard work! Learning also doesn’t come immediately or easily every single time. Setting an intention of working through those educational roadblocks and not giving up are essential qualities and values that can work for every single person, and carry us all through the hard times that life tends to bring.
Goal Statement Idea: When I get frustrated, I’m going to ____________ instead of _______.
Ex: When I get frustrated in math, I’m going to ask for help instead of start talking to my friends.
Maintain or Improve
How did your child feel about their grades and overall learning last year? Were they proud? Did they feel there was more they could do? Take last year’s report card and use it as a reflective tool. Facilitate conversation where your elementary or middle schooler thinks about how they want this year to be different (or similar) to the last one.
We say this because if your child is getting all A’s, this is a true accomplishment, and it’s okay for them to continue this as the curriculum increases in rigor. However, think about one area they may have struggled in, and ask if they have any goals for that specific subject.
Goal Statement Idea: Last year I _______________, this year my goal is to improve/maintain _______ by ____________.
Ex: Last year I got all A’s and one B. This year, my goal is to get all A’s by getting extra help in history at the start of the school year.
Friendship and Working With Others
Social and emotional goals are just as important as academic ones, though they often get overlooked. It’s hard to quantify friendships, but especially for kids who are bit more shy, working on making a new friendship is a great starting place. For middle schoolers and upper elementary-aged kids, these are the years where friendships and friend dynamics are often fraught with changes and drama. It can be a great idea to reflect on some of these values when forming goals for the upcoming school year.
Goal Statement Idea: I’m going to be a good friend to others by __________________.
Ex: I’m going to be a good friend to others by not calling people names when I’m mad, or if I don’t like them.
How to Track
- Write Them Down: After your initial conversation with your child, have them record their goals in a place that won’t be forgotten.
- Check Back In: Talk about goal progress after the first day of school, after a month of school, and then once every quarter. Discuss any wins and/or refinements.
- Encourage Often: Your kids look up to you and want you to be proud of them! Provide encouragement in a number of ways — verbally praise them, post up their accomplishments on their fridge or around the house, and treat them now and then for their hard work.
- Practice Flexibility: Nothing is perfected immediately — goals take time to really sink in and be achieved. Always maintain a growth mindset, and encourage the same for your child when they approach setbacks.
Goal-setting is an exceptional part of life, as it’s a vehicle for self-reflection and self-growth. At New Vision Charter School, we help teach your child all of these essential components as they continue to navigate their way through life. We still have openings for middle school and elementary school — apply with New Vision Charter School today, and have a great first day back at school!