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Future Educator, Ventura County, California

One of my dreams is to have

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One of my dreams is to have my own school and create my own curriculum. I wanted to include virtues in my teaching program. This gave me good ideas.

choir director / deployed Soldier

I think what I like most

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I think what I like most about this post is the idea of setting a goal related to something that is "ongoing" rather than a "check the block." It's one thing for me to assess my students with standards that are very tightly defined. It's another to allow students to assess themselves and each other using something more nebulous. It encourages discussion, perhaps even disagreement, but all in an effort to further their conceptions of what it means to be a good citizen in our society.

The challenge, of course, is how to allocate time to this sort of goal-setting. It's easy to say, "Oh yeah, we'll make it part of the curriculum by doing X, Y, & Z." It's just as easy to say, "Well, we don't have time for this." Somewhere in the middle is the happy medium and it takes a skilled educator with excellent classroom management skills to enact a program such as this one.

Education Consultant

Goal setting is very

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Goal setting is very important. In band class, I would create a spreadsheet where students could set goals like 'how fast I will play the Bb scale" or "how many hours I will practice a week'. The trickiest part was always the peer assessment AND the self assessment. I found that I had to practice how to do both in a safe and constructive environment. Has anyone else had issues with peer assessment and self assessment? I'm not sure I ever really tackled this issue fully when I was in the classroom.

I just used this exercise

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I just used this exercise with 8th graders on our 8th grade retreat. Our school is a preschool-8th school, and this served very well as a leadership/goal setting/"mindsetting" exercise for this class, as we are trying to promote them as "leaders" of the MS and a model for others to follow.
I did modify this in the following ways, which might be useful to others: adding a school culture/community strengthening component - which of these virtues do we want to see and promote in the MS? How might we go about doing this? What are individual roles for this, and how might the 8th grade as a whole promote these virtues for the MS? What virtues do they want to focus on as a class, and for the community at large?
After many hours of running around and screaming their heads off and getting their energy out, we were finally able to make some headway on these questions (in addition to the individual short term and long term individual goals the students set for themselves) towards the end of the night while sitting around the campfire. It was a meaningful exchange, and one that I hope the students will remember and hold onto. We will check in with them in a couple weeks and see how things are progressing! Even if little headway is made, however, at least we got them this far... we are thinking marathon, not sprint, especially with this age group. Thank you for a great exercise! We will be having our entire MS go on a 3 day retreat this week, and I will be modifying this a bit for larger groups and diverse ages. Ideally, the 8th graders will be able to steer these conversations and interviews, as they have already gone through this as a class. Wish me luck!

Third grade teacher, eastern Washington state

I've been trying to wrap my

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I've been trying to wrap my head around student goal setting, and I appreciate this article's emphasis on virtues. This is an excellent place to start!

I loved this article. It's so

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+1

I loved this article. It's so important to model positive goal setting AND to have kids practice positive goal setting. It would be such an interesting assignment to have students reassess goals from the beginning of the year at the end of the year. What a visual for them to see how far they've come,and how much they've grown!

Community Manager at Edutopia

Hi Tristan, welcome to the

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Hi Tristan, welcome to the Edutopia community. I'm glad we can be a resource for you.

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