Benefits of goal setting for children
As we welcome in the new year, there is a feeling of hope and excitement for what 2021 will bring. The new year symbolises new beginnings, and the opportunity to start fresh. Oftentimes we use the new year as an opportunity to set goals and make plans for the year ahead. Goal-setting is an important factor in achievement and is a useful tool to introduce to children. Setting goals helps children to visualise their aspirations and dreams, and think through the steps required to achieve them. The process of goal setting can be motivating, and help set children up for a lifetime of achievement. This blog outlines four benefits of goal setting for children and tips for helping your child stay on track with their goals.
1. Triggering new behaviours
Before your child returns to school for the new year, sit down with them and talk through their goals for the year ahead. They might have a clear idea of what they want to achieve, whether that is learning an instrument, playing a sport, passing a test with a certain score, or receiving a top performance award. On the other hand, they may require coaching and mentorship to uncover their aspirations, and think through their goals for the year.
After setting goals with your child, you may notice changes in their behaviour. Following the goal setting exercise, your child will likely experience increased interest in achieving their objective. This may trigger new behaviours, such as practicing shooting baskets every afternoon, or reading before bed without being prompted. Help your child maintain these behaviours by supporting them in building positive habits. Setting goals provides children with motivation to study hard and practice often. Help your child stay on track with their progress by encouraging them along the way, and taking an interest. You may be able to support their goals by providing them with extra support, such as enrolling them in tutoring or lessons that support their specific goal.
2. Sustained momentum
Goals help children to stay motivated and on track with their learning and personal development. Setting a big goal at the beginning of the year helps children to develop strategies to achieve their goals, and helps to build momentum and confidence. When children notice small improvements in their abilities or receive recognition for their advancement or effort, their motivation increases, which generates momentum. They become invested in their development and achieving their goals. Achievement is a big contributor towards confidence, which is an essential attribute to cultivate in children. Small wins, such as moving up a reading group, passing a difficult spelling test, or getting into a sports team, help children to unlock their potential and strive to achieve more.
3. Guides focus
Setting goals provides structure and focus for children. With so many distractions and opportunities to explore, goals help children to home in their focus on what is important to them. This might look like making choices about how they spend their free time, what classes they take, or what extracurricular activities they participate in. If your child has set a goal to get top in the class for English, they might choose to spend their evenings reading instead of watching TV or take an interest in English tuition above music lessons. Having goals helps children to make conscious choices that align with their values and aspirations.
4. Achievement & personal growth
Arguably the biggest benefit of goal setting is achievement. Goals keep children accountable, and accountability is a huge motivator for achievement. When children are determined to achieve their goals, they often do. Accomplishing a goal can either lead to fulfilment, pride, and increased motivation, or a drop in motivation and dissatisfaction if the goal is not achieved. In cases where a goal is not accomplished, the experience provides the opportunity to reflect, and develop resilience.
Setting goals with children is important for their development and helps them to start thinking big. There are many strategies to get the process started, such as writing down their goals, creating action plans and visualising their objectives. Check out this blog about how to set goals for children, to learn more about helping children to dream big.
If your child has uncovered a passion or a weakness that they want to work on, help them to set goals that support their development in that area. NumberWorks’nWords tutoring helps children to build confidence and boost their school results. We offer maths and English tuition for every level and provide personalised tutoring programs that are designed to help each student achieve their learning goals. We are passionate about helping children close knowledge gaps, gain confidence, and improve their maths and English abilities. If you are interested in learning more about tuition with NumberWorks’nWords, get in touch to book a free assessment today!