But no one is born knowing how to set goals and develop a plan to carry them out. Reader Jane Haney suggests five steps to help your child learn how to set goals . . . and achieve them:
- At the beginning of the week, help your child identify one challengingêbut attainableêgoal. It might be turning in a book report on time. It might be getting 90% correct on a spelling test.
- Have your child write the goal on a piece of paper. Post it on the refrigerator or a bulletin board.
- Talk about how to accomplish the goal. Help your child break the goal down into smaller steps. For example, "You could read two chapters every day. Then you can spend a day writing your report and another day revising it."
- As the week progresses, ask how things are going. If problems come up, talk about possible solutions. If your child falls behind in reading, for example, a ten-minute extension of bedtime might encourage him to catch up.
- At the end of the week, help your child evaluate how well she did. Did she achieve her goal? Why or why not?
Most important, praise your child for trying. Then set a new goal for next week.
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