Help Your Child Set Educational Goals for the Year Ahead

Children who learn how to set goals at a young age have a head start on success. Goal setting gives kids a sense of empowerment and teaches them to take responsibility for their learning.

There are two different types of goals your student can set for the year ahead: Grade-based and habit-based. Grade-based goals are focused specifically on improving results, and they give kids something concrete to aim for, such as a B in maths. 

Habit-based goals are equally important because they are about changing behaviour for long-term success. Some examples include completing homework early, participating more in class, joining the debating team or reading more books. 

Follow these tips to motivate and inspire your student to achieve their best. 

Set Meaningful Goals

While you might have a clear idea of the areas your student needs to work on, resist the temptation to impose your views. For goals to be meaningful, children need to come up with their own. Ask them what they want to achieve and then delve a little deeper by asking why this is important to them. Discuss obstacles they may encounter, and brainstorm ways they can overcome these obstacles.

Three to five goals are usually sufficient for students. Experts recommend one or two major goals for the year and one goal for each term. Progress needs to be measurable, so students know if they are achieving their aims.

Break into Steps

Once your child has decided on their goals, you can help them break each goal down into manageable steps. This is a critical part of the goal-setting process because students who set ambitious goals and fail to achieve them will become disillusioned and lose motivation. 

To assist your child, encourage them to create a goal ladder with defined steps towards their objectives. For example, if they want to read more advanced books, start with longer books at their current level and work up to more complex stories. This will instil confidence and give them a taste of success.

Never Give Up

Students are often enthusiastic about setting goals at the start of the year but quickly lose interest and don’t put in the required work. It’s important not to shame your child for failing to achieve their goals. Instead, you can turn this into a teachable moment by helping them understand what went wrong. 

Failure represents an opportunity for your child to learn about what motivates them so they can apply themselves more consistently in future. Ask them to set a smaller related goal that is achievable in the short-term to boost confidence. 

A tutor can help students achieve their goals and create good learning habits that will last a lifetime.

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