I am not a runner. I don't enjoy running. I'm not particular good at it. And, I definitely don't have the mental game or desire to try to practice it. In April 2013, I ran my first 5K. There was nothing pretty about it! I finished the race huffing and puffing (and walking in-between) in around 45 minutes. Fast forward to this past Sunday. Still nothing pretty about it, but since that first 5K (and just a handful in between), I've knocked off close to 20 minutes off my time and ran my personal best at just under 27 minutes.
I wouldn't be able to do this on my own. I accomplished this for a couple of reasons:
- I set a goal for myself. I want to at least match, but mostly beat my previous time (and I WILL sprint that last 1/4 mile to do so).
- I had a "coach" along the way - a friend who runs marathons - helping me to pace myself (instead of trying to sprint the whole thing) and provide that immediate feedback.
As we are setting goals with students, help them to be involved in the process. For the goal to be effective, they need to understand the purpose and meaning and it needs to be something challenging for them - on their cutting edge. The more specific the goal, the better. For example, we want students to learn their multiplication facts or more in DRA level. But, think about what skills they need to reach their goal - HOW and WHAT they need to know and be able to do to meet this goal. Set those mini-goals along the way and COACH them to reaching those goals. Most importantly, provide them with immediate and constructive feedback as to how they are doing along the way.
What goals will you set for yourself as a teacher? With so many things demanding our time as teachers, choosing an area to focus on will help you grow in your profession. If you want help setting a goal or are looking for feedback, please let me help you reach your goal!
Tidbits worth knowing
- SIOP - I was lucky enough to be trained in SIOP again. My biggest take away was, again, that SIOP strategies are good for ALL kids and so many elementary teachers are doing those things naturally in their classrooms. Good teachers use SIOP strategies all the time. Check out SFSD ELL Wiki to learn more about SIOP and strategies to support English Language Learners. Action Steps: Think about ways that you can provide opportunities to provide both content and language objectives for your students. What content do you want students to learn? What kind of language output do you want student to use (i.e. taking, writing)?
- Chunk and Chew - Check out the tip of the week on the right. :)
- How do you create a growth mindset in your classroom? Check out Edutopia blog post - Growth Mindset: A Driving Thought, Not Just A Tool. It's not a fad, it's just simply helping each child believe in their own ability.