4 Awesome Back to School Tips to Help YOU and Your Favorite Elementary Student for a Successful School Year
“People with goals succeed because they know where they’re going.” - Earl Nightingale
One of the best gifts you can give your child is teaching them the skill of goal-setting, a foundational skill set that’s critical for developing their grit muscle; understanding and believing that anything is possible, with hard work and dedication.
This is why we’ve chosen goal setting as the #1 Tip to integrate into your preparation plans for the new school year.
1. Be Flexible
The beautiful thing about goal setting is that it’s something that doesn’t have to be perfect; you’ll get better at it every time… and the process you’re going through with your little one will be one where they’ll begin to tap into the elements of the process more and more, each time… looking forward to it - as they start to recognize the results, even at a young age.
REMEMBER: Keep it Simple and Make It Fun! Help them through it, by giving them ideas and as they come - write them down… use colored markers and a board that you can put up in their bedroom - so they can see and remember the work that you did together. :)
- Schedule a time to talk about goals and start by asking questions, like:
- What’s something you wish you could achieve?
- What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?
- What’s something new that you want to learn how to do?
- Discuss the purpose of their goal by asking questions, like:
- What do you think is the most significant benefit to you doing well in school?
- How can performing well in school, lead to helping others?
- Chunk the big goals into smaller steps, create a visual:
- Create a stair step case and place one of the big goals at the top of the staircase.
- Talk through the steps that will lead to the achievement of the big goal, and make them clear to understand and achievable, remember; you’re building a new muscle.
- Place a little box or something you can check off, visually, as you make progress towards your goals.
- Talk through the potential obstacles or things that may come up along the way:
- Create more visuals that represent the obstacles, so you can plan to work through them together! Use fun pictures and do your best. :)
- Talk about how bad habits or negative thoughts will sometimes occur, along the way, and come up with a visual reference that you can refer to so that both of you know the “special word” or “thing” that will help you remember that you’re on a mission! So those things start to become recognizable to you both, so you can shift and get back to focusing on the things that you know will keep moving you both, forward.
- Come up with a reward program, where your child earns a sticker to add to their goal board every time they do something positive, even if the positive is the recognition of a bad habit or something that helps you get out of the house on time in the morning… all of these little WINS lead to the next, and you want your child to recognize these things are ALL part of the process.
2. Be Flexible.
Life happens, you’re not always going to be able to do everything, and the process of goal setting, creating plans and working towards them the best you can, gives you another phenomenal opportunity to teach your child about being flexible. Learning how to adapt to change is another excellent skillset to begin working on at a young age, it’s something that your child will always be able to rely on, as sometimes there are things outside of our control that happens, so your ability to handle changes or things that don’t work out the way you originally intended - is another excellent muscle to start building, together!
3. Learn to Say No.
It’s easy to get caught up trying to be the best mom or the best dad on the planet… where you think that by saying YES to everything, you’re doing what you need to do, to be the best. One of the biggest reasons 92% of people on the planet are still trying to learn how to achieve their goals is FOCUS. It’s difficult to accomplish goals when you’re spread too thin… so every time something comes up where you’re asked to do something extra, it doesn’t necessarily mean you have to say YES. :) Practice saying NO, by thinking about whether or not “the ask,” task, assignment, event, party, whatever it is - comes up… You’ll recognize that often it’s not going to have a direct impact on your goals. Having the discipline to say no to things is going to be another excellent learning example to share with your child, feel free to share these decisions with your child, so they can recognize how you’re thinking through them… weighing them against your own goals, and theirs… so they begin to put those pieces together, for themselves.
4. Create a Routine.
If you’re a new parent and just starting to get a handle of how to manage your time and energy effectively with all of your responsibilities, you’ve probably noticed how some days seem to flow better than others. One of the best pieces of advice you can start to put into practice if you’re not already is the power of creating a routine…helping to control what sometimes feels like chaos...running from one thing to the next. :) Creating a routine for yourself and your child will help you create a flow that can be improved upon, every day, as your child will start to learn how to flow with you, helping you move through things faster, and more efficiently. This practice will also carry over into the routines that are created for your child at school, creating a fantastic foundation for your child to learn and grow.