How to Set Teaching Goals For The New Year

Uncategorized Dec 20, 2020
So many of us feel inspired when the new year comes around to set new goals in all sort of areas of your life - but do you take the time to set clear and specific goals for your teaching career?
As you all know, keeping up with the day-to-day tasks of teaching can keep us very busy. This means that sometimes our long-term goals and priorities can get swept to the side due to more urgent tasks that are begging for our attention. Whilst these tasks might be urgent, they are not necessarily important in the big scheme of things - but nevertheless they end up consuming our time.
This can sometimes cause us to become a little bit lost in the system. We might lose sight of the reason why we became a teacher and could even become a bit disillusioned. 
Setting goals helps us to act with purpose, clarity and focus, and reminds us of what is most important to us. You can't get to where you want to go without knowing how to get there - so this article will help you to not only identify your goals but break them down into manageable chunks that will make it more likely that you will achieve them.
Before you embark on your goal-setting, it's a great idea to do a reflection on the prior year. This article will help you with this. 
Step 1:
When setting goals, it's important to have your mission statement in front of you. Get clear on, or remind yourself of, your beliefs, values and priorities, and what is at the core of what it is that you want to achieve as a teacher. As you review your mission statement, you may decide to make some changes or adjustments, based on where you are at in your life right now.
Step 2:
Based on your mission statement, what is one thing that you would like to focus on for the year, that will help you to move towards achieving your mission? Write this down. Based on this one goal, identify your 'word for the year' - that is, one word that sets a clear intention for you to always keep in mind.
Step 3:
Now break this big goal down into quarterly goals. What do you need to achieve by the end of every term in order to achieve your big goal by the end of the year?
Step 4:
Break your quarterly goal down into weekly goals.
Step 5:
In your calendar (either electronic or hardcopy, whatever works best for you), write your weekly goals into every Monday.
Put in a reminder every Friday to assess whether or not you achieved your weekly goal.
Put in a reminder at the end of every term to assess your quarterly goals.
Step 6 (optional).
Create a vision board using a program like word, PPT, or Canva. Use images and words that creates a visual representation of what you want to achieve for the year. You can use this as your desktop image on your computer, or print it out and put it on the wall at your desk, in your classroom, or as the cover page to your teacher planner. Having this regular daily reminder of your goals will help you to keep more accountable to them and make it more likely that you will achieve them. Having them visible to others also creates another layer of accountability, and it's a great example to set for your students and colleagues.
During the year: 
When doing your weekly or daily planning, identify 1-3 small daily tasks, habits or routines, that will help you to achieve your goals, and schedule it into your day. These are your MIT's (most important tasks).These are tasks that are important, but if you don't prioritise them then they may get swept to the side due to other more urgent tasks. Make it a priority to ensure that these tasks are completed every day, no matter what.
Let me know how you go with your goal-setting for the new year! 
Kelly :) 

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