My Secret Weapon for Progressing Your Students
This term during “Get Your Teach On”, I have been sharing about how to grow in your own practice as a teacher. So today, I want to talk about THE most significant resources to deepening our teaching skills and growing confidence in ourselves as teachers… student goals!!!
There is nothing more daunting in our early years of teaching than seeing a student struggling with something and not knowing how to help them progress… or seeing a child whiz through what you’ve taught them and then sit listlessly in class because they’re not feeling challenged. This is EXACTLY why I created my Student Goals resources 5 years ago.
Through my ten years experience as an educator, I have taken everything I’ve observed and learned in the classroom about student development and translated it into Student Goals in Reading, Writing, Maths and Personal Goals. These Goals slips are an incredible resource to guide your teaching and take your kids to the next level without even thinking about it!
So today, I’m sharing my top #teachertips to using Goals slips to grow your students!
Help your students see their progression by giving them a STUDENT Goals Book
These Goals Books are very easy to make – simply print and staple it, fill in the student’s name and then pop their first Goal Slip into it! This is a great way for EVERYONE to keep track of a student’s goal – themselves, their parents…and even us as we track every student’s individual goals. Using these goal cards will help the children know what they are working towards AND also helps the parents follow through at home. So as the children kick through their goals, they feel amazed at what they achieve and parents can see you thriving as a teacher. And when we see the students achieve their learning goals…we feel like this is exactly why we’re here!
Use STUDENT GoalS Slips to invite parents to be part of their child’s learning
As teachers, we need to invite parents to be part of their child’s learning team. It’s not all up to you as the teacher – it’s a team effort from you, the child AND the parents together. Goals Slips are a great way to keep the parents informed of what you’re working on with their child, so then they can follow through with helping their children practice the goals at home. And this kind of collaboration really strengthens those parent/teacher relationship.
Simply pop a Personal goal slip in a communication book and send it home once a week with the students, staple a Reading goal slip to their home reading logs or a Writing Goal in their writing books so the parents know exactly how bridge the gap between their child’s learning from school to home.
Track your students goals visually in the classroom with Goals Posters
It can be hard to keep on top of everyone’s goals without pulling them out a thousand times a day… which is why I created my Goals Posters. So if you can give up beloved wall space, pop the Goal Posters on your wall with the names of the students who are working on that goal beside it. I love backing the Goals Posters onto coloured card to give them a bit of pop!
Once you get in the rhythm of updating it as your students progress, it’s a great way for you and the students to know exactly which goal they’re working towards and everyone’s aware of it at all times. Plus – you won’t get those dreaded blank looks when you ask a student what their reading goal is! 🙌🏼
Use Personal Goals for Behaviour Management
One of my favourite tips for classroom behaviour management is to frame it as a Goal. That way you’re not telling a student what they have to do, you’re inviting them to aim for a regular practice of that behaviour. My Personal Goals slips encourage so many different qualities you want to see in your students and sets the tone that you want present in your classroom… like talking clearly, sharing my books, cleaning my learning space.
I use these student goals on a personal needs basis, so every child has a different goal. Rather than having a certain time of the day when I give these out, I do it 1-1 with a student as the need arises. AND I do it gently and lovingly – so the student feels excited about what they are working towards with my support. 💕
Simply place them on their Student Goal Desk Mat and they’ll be able to see what they’re working towards at any given moment.
Celebrate your students success
When one of my student’s achieve their goal I like to make A HUGE DEAL out of it. To celebrate every single one of my students’ success, I get everyone to stop what they’re doing and announce that someone just achieved their goal! I invite everyone to clap and cheer and we go absolutely OTT! And the students…they feel AH-MAZING!! This in turn encourages other students to aim for their goals too.
Celebration is absolutely contagious and it’s a great way to teach our students to cheer one another on!
Take in STUDENT goalS AS THEY’RE achieved
Seeing your children advance through their goals throughout the year really is the best feeling ever. It strengthens your self confidence and reminds you that you are nailing teaching so much! There is nothing that makes your students feel stronger as a learner as ticking off their Goal Slip once they’ve achieved it and receiving their next one… so I want to remind you to take in that moment! Look at the joy in your student’s face, enjoy their feeling of pride… because it’s a reflection on you and the incredible job you’re doing as a teacher. Everytime you celebrate a student reaching their goal, use it as a DAILY feedback loop that you are doing what you set out to: helping students learn!!
I just want to say a HUGE thank you for journeying with me throughout Term 3 and exploring “Get Your Teach On”!! I have absolutely loved sharing how to deepen your teaching practice and expand your skill set – so you can be the best teacher you can be. I’m heading off on Maternity Leave this week as I prepare to meet my precious little girl. I can’t wait to introduce her to you in the coming weeks! 💞
In the meantime, if you’re craving a BFF in your classroom fix, you can check out any of my blog posts you may have missed over the Term here:
- Get your teach on!
- No student left behind
- Mastering the art of student led learning
- Maths strategies for days