I’d like to start by wishing all you kids and parents a Happy New Year!
“Um, Nef? Aren’t you a little early for that?,” I can hear you saying.
But relax, I’m not trying to promote time travel. September is the beginning of a new school year. And just like many of you make New Year’s Resolutions, “Back to School”, can be a great time to teach your kids about goal setting.
Back to school can be an exciting time for kids – and sometimes for parents too! Your children will be entering a new grade, reconnecting with old friends, making new friends, and maybe even joining some social extracurricular or sports teams. This makes it a great opportunity to sit down with your kids and help them make some “Back to School Resolutions”.
Help your children set goals. And remember, it’s ok to have expectations of them for the school year, but these should be their own goals – by letting them set the goals that they are most interested in, they will have a better chance of success. Here are a few ideas to talk to your children about.
Back to School Resolutions: Academic goals
Whether your child is an A student or whether they struggle in school, they can set realistic goals for themselves. Goals might include:
– To get a better grade in math than I did last year.
– To hand in all of my homework on time.
– To improve my reading skills.
Back to School Resolutions: Social Goals
School is not just about academics. It is a chance for your children to learn about social interaction and to help them be contributors to their social community (school). A few possible ideas might be:
– To make one good new friend this year.
– To join a club that interests me.
– To volunteer in a community outreach program that my school participates in.
Back to School Resolutions: Health Goals
There can be a lot of pressure on children to look or behave a certain way, but as a parent you can help them set realistic and age-appropriate goals for their health. Some examples of health goals might be:
– Join a sport or activity that helps me be active.
– Have at least one fruit or veggie in every lunch.
– Stay away from kids who are smoking.
Obviously, you want to help set goals that are age appropriate and that suit the individual interests of your child. But helping them to set goals now – whatever those goals may be – is going to help them establish a habit of goal setting which will be of value for their entire lives.