Help your student set and keep goals for 2022
Every new year is a chance to make a fresh start with new resolutions. New Year’s resolutions aren’t just for adults, either. They’re for everyone! Since it is the beginning of 2022, now is the perfect time to work with your child on setting attainable goals and sticking to them throughout the year.
Now that winter break is over and everyone is back in class, it’s a great time to reinforce setting academic and personal goals. Goals can be small or large but they should always be S.M.A.R.T. (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-Based).
Wondering how to help your middle school child set New Year’s resolutions and keep them? We have answers. Let’s dive in.
It doesn’t have to be hard
Setting New Year’s resolutions can be daunting for anyone, no matter your age. It doesn’t have to be challenging, though! Goals are personal to the individual and can be as small or large as he or she wants.
Start by encouraging your child to focus on their strengths and then think about ways to improve them. Maybe your student excels in math, for example. Perhaps he or she can join a math club to strengthen their skills and even compete against other students. Or, say your child is good at soccer – ask them if they want to set a resolution to try out for a soccer team at school or a local club.
Types of resolutions for middle schoolers
New Year’s resolutions for middle schoolers usually fall into a few different categories: social, academic, athletic, and personal. Have a pressure-free conversation with your child on what they’d like to achieve personally or academically this year. If you see they are struggling with an academic subject, try to set resolutions around improving in a specific, attainable way.
Resolutions your child can make might sound like:
Make a new friend this year
Invite a friend over to play at least twice a month
Join a club or after-school activity before the school year ends
Volunteer with a local organization this year
Read 30 minutes every day
Ask my teacher for help improving my study habits by the end of this week
Organize my backpack every night
Practice my sport every week for at least 15 minutes a day
Run around the block every day
Keep my room clean every day
Eat one less junk food snack per day
Do my school work as soon as I get home
Pay attention in class every day
Watch one less TV show per day
Spend 30 minutes less time playing computer games per day
Find a new hobby this month
Not talk back to my parents
It’s up to you and your child on how many resolutions you want to make. Try not to be too forceful on which resolutions you’d like them to make or how many.
Tips for keeping New Year's resolutions
Making resolutions with your child is one thing but sticking to them is another. Though that part might be challenging, there are ways to help your child stay on track and reach their goals. When deciding which resolution(s) to make, help your child achieve their goals by making them S.M.A.R.T. Let’s go into each aspect of this concept to get a better understanding.
Your child’s resolutions should have a specific goal or target. If they want to improve their reading proficiency, for example, they could resolve to read 30 minutes more per day during the school week. If your child wants to make the soccer team, they could decide to practice in the yard three times a week.
It’s essential to track your child’s progress. Keep track of progress every day or every week. Make a chart and check in regularly to see how your child is doing. Plus, you can use New Year’s resolutions to ensure homework gets completed. Or, use them to stop putting off projects until the last minute.
It’s essential to set realistic goals. It might be difficult for a child who struggles in math to make an A, but they may be able to improve from a D to a C or a B. You want goals that will challenge your child, but they shouldn't be so overwhelming that they will give up in frustration before Valentine’s Day.
Goals should match your child’s overall objectives. In other words, they need to be relevant to the resolution. If a goal won’t end up helping your child keep their resolution, it’s probably not a good goal. Ask whether a goal will contribute toward keeping the resolution.
Goals should have a timeframe for when they should be achieved. If your child is vying for a place on the soccer team, the end date of completing the resolution would be when try-outs begin. Make sure the timeframe is realistic, as well.
Other ways parents can help
You can help support your child and encourage them to keep their New Year’s resolutions in many ways. They include:
1. Make your own resolutions
The number one thing to consider in helping your child stick to their resolution(s) is making your own so you can work alongside them. Children are much more likely to do what they see, rather than what they’re simply told to do.
If your child wants to lose weight, make getting healthier a family endeavor, for example. Resolve to cook more nutritious meals. You can also do physical activities as a family, such as riding bikes together or walking regularly.
2. Resist the urge to nag
While you should track your child’s progress, nagging rarely works. It’s okay to offer reminders or find ways to ensure your child meets their goals for the week or month. Constant harping might make your child refuse, however.
3. Share your goals
Be open with your child about your experience with resolutions. Did you keep them? If so, how did you ensure success? If you didn’t keep your resolution, explain why, so your child can learn from your mistakes.
4. Be positive
Be excited about your child’s resolutions. Let them know that this is a chance to learn and get better together. Your child will tackle resolutions with more enthusiasm if you seem positive about the process.
Resolve to make this year fantastic
Now is the perfect time to make New Year’s resolutions with your child. Resolutions are an excellent way for children to work on achieving goals that will improve their lives or help others.
If you need help coming up with goals, Lamad Academy can help. Our teachers and staff are here to ensure your child’s academic and personal goals will be achieved. Contact us if you have any questions about our school or curriculum.
If you are looking for a well-rounded, STEAM-based school for your middle schooler, contact the Lamad Academy Admissions Office.