It’s back to school time! A lot of kids (and teachers) had their first day of school today. My school started back in July so this is actually our fifth week of school. It feels pretty good to have 20 school days under our belt. I love the beginning of the year. Everything is fresh and new. New supplies. New students. New ideas!
I know a great activity for students at the beginning of the year is goal-setting. My school works very hard on helping our students really own their learning, set goals for themselves and then getting them to track their own progress. I am working with Kinder and 1st grade students this year (as an Interventionist) so I really wanted to work on getting my kids involved in setting goals and tracking them. Just because they are five or six, doesn’t meant they can’t make their own learning goals!
I wanted to share with you a few ideas I started with my students this school year. As an RtI Interventionist, I am constantly creating and tracking goals for each of my students. I really wanted to get them involved this year so I decided to create folders for my students to use where they can make goals and track their progress:
The kids started by decorating their folder cover (see above). My groups consist of reading and math, but setting goals can work for any subject or even behavior!
Next, we talked about what specific goal we would be working on in our groups. My Kinder groups are working on learning letters and sounds. My first grade groups are working on reading more difficult texts and increasing their fluency. My first grade math group is working on problem solving and number sense.
In my first grade groups, we had another discussion on several ways we could reach our goals. In our reading groups we came up with reading lots of books, using flash cards, using reading strategies and trying our best. In my math group, we talked about practicing counting, using cubes or drawings when solving word problems and writing our numbers every day.
Finally, since we have had groups for two weeks now, we started tracking our data. In my Kinder groups we are tracking how many letter names we can identify in a minute (next quarter it will be sounds). In first grade we are tracking our fluency and in math we are tracking how many questions we get correct on the weekly assessment (out of four).
I encourage you to have your students set goals at the beginning of the year and revisit them throughout the year to see how they grow. Soon enough, they will have to set new goals!
Let me know if the comments how you set goals and/or track progress in your classroom!