The Importance of Goal Setting in the New Year, Happy 2015!

With the New Year brings a fresh start. Traditionally it is a time for reflection, resolutions, and goal setting. This year I am not making any resolutions instead I am going to focus on one word to help it guide in my daily life and decisions. Along with my one word I am setting SMART goals to ensure I stay focused on what I hope to accomplish and achieve. For me my one word is going to be Love. I’m going to be intentional in doing my daily actions and treatment of others with love. This year has showed me over and over again how important people and relationships are and how each and every interaction with someone gives us the opportunity to show them love, I want to be more deliberate with this. My SMART goals are both personal and professional. Personally I plan to be more present with my family, to know when I need to stop answering emails and tweeting and give them my full attention, at least two hours each evening. Professionally I am going to finish my last Doctorate class, take my comprehensive exams, and get my dissertation proposal approved. I also want to look closely at providing extra interventions for struggling learners in our building as well as enrichment opportunities I need to prioritize resources for both ends of the spectrum. My third goal is to help our students become more goal focused.
I found this video from Edutopia and thought it was a great inspiration for empowering our students. I want our students to set one big long term goal and then two short term goals. The big long term goal can be anything they like. The short term goals will be related to our benchmark assessments DIBELS next and Discovery Education math and english language arts. Whatever their long term goal is their benchmark assessments will help them achieve it. If they want to get into a good college, benchmark tests are predictors or later academic achievement. Be a successful athlete they need to maintain grades to compete in school. Own their own business they need reading and math skills. Any long term goal a student can think of we can connect their benchmark assessments.
It is also important for students to understand how we use their benchmark assessment data. As a team myself, grade level teachers, intervention specialist, the school psychologist, and support personnel review the scores every six weeks to ensure students are progressing and to identify areas and students that need support. If a student has not given their best effort on the assessment we could be identifying them to receive supports they do not need. That is a waste of the student’s time and of our building resources. Here is a presentation that helps explain how DIBELS is used as a predictor and an indicator on student reading skills.
Academic success has been the best indicator for later life success, research study after research study has supported success in school helps students have success in life. Our goal for every student is to help them have as many opportunities open to them as possible and giving them a strong academic foundation does that.
When students return from break instructors will help students reflect on their progress and goal set, I can’t wait to hear what their big long term goals are.

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