Two weeks ago, a dear friend of mine, Connie, and I were discussing our homeschools, and one of her suggestions was to sit down with each child and set goals for the year!
… WHAT A FABULOUS IDEA… and it fits in perfectly with the Montessori approach!
The next day, Aikman and I sat down to discuss what a goal was and what some of his goals were for this year. Coming from a 5 year old, I really didn’t expect him to say much… maybe a field trip to a specific place, or possibly something he would like to study.
Well, I must admit, he didn’t disappoint… he did mention that he wanted to go to the zoo to see his favorite animals, the meercats, and he wanted to take another trip to the aquarium to see the penguins, another personal favorite. He did mention that he wanted to study animals, which was a part of my plans for this year anyways (I detected this earlier this year, and was already planning on it.)
However, shockingly, he told me that he wanted to read 130 books by the end of the year, by himself! Likewise, he wanted us to read 734 books together as read-alouds. I was SO impressed… not only did he understand what a goal was, but he also understood what constituted a reachable goal for himself – no prompting needed!Aikman with his reading chart
We made a chart for him to keep up with his total books read all by himself, as well as a list to track the read-alouds that we’ve read this year. This is great reinforcement in showing Aikman that he is working towards his goals, and I can encourage him to continue to work towards his goals.
However, what I really liked about Connie’s plan is that the parent is also supposed to share his/her goals with the child(ren). Not only is the parent providing a reminder of the goals that the child personally wants to achieve, but also the child can also remind the parent of his/her goals. For instance, my goal is to exercise 3 times a week (which is also made into a chart), and if I’m having a bad week, and not wanting to exercise, he can remind me that I need to be working towards my goal, just like I am reminding him to work towards his goals.
Have you asked your children what goals they have? Do these goals align with what you are teaching this year? I’m looking forward to hearing what others think about this!