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Goal setting for children

goal; setting; aims; targets; success; attitude; affirmations; positive; thinking; realistic;


What is goal setting?

goal settingHave you ever had dreams about what you would like to be when you grow up, how you will play in your next game, how you will go in your test, or how you could learn to play a guitar?

You may not have those particular dreams, but I bet you do dream about something in your life. Well, just dreaming about it won't make it happen.

What you can do is set some goals, and work out how you are going to make it happen.

Before you start setting goals

  1. Think about yourself...
    - what sort of person are you? (eg friendly, shy, quiet, talkative)
    - what are your interests?
    - what impression do you give others?
    - how do you feel about yourself?
  2. Make a list of all the positive things you can think of, eg.
    - I'm a neat writer
    - I'm a happy person
    - I'm kind.
  3. Now think about the things you can do, eg.
    - I have good ball skills
    - I can cook French toast
    - I can knit
    - I can bowl a cricket ball.
    - I am good at using a computer
  4. Finally, think about your appearance, eg.
    - I have 2 of everything I should have
    - I have healthy hair
    - my teeth are shiny
    - I smile more than I frown.

goal setting

So, now you have a list of all the personal assets that make up your wonderful, unique self. Think about what you can do with those assets, and sort through your dreams to see which could come true one day if you work towards them. Be realistic. If you cannot sing a note, it is highly unlikely that you would become a singer!

Set different kinds of goals

goal setting Now it's time to set some goals to help you get to all those dreams of yours.

You need to write some goals down, sort out which are the most important goals, and then decide what are the steps to take to help you get there.

How to write down your goals

Here is one way you can do this:

Areas of life Goals to set What I need to learn What I need to do Who can help me
Relationships Get on well with my brother/sister To listen
To look after my stuff
To share etc.
Tidy my room
Help him/her tidy up their stuff
Mum and Dad
My health and fitness        
Maths To learn how to do division My X tables   Teacher
Leisure      But get the 'have to do' stuff done first  

Got the idea? Of course you need to concentrate on one at a time. goal setting

Decide which is most important and then write out as many things as you can think of in each box.

Then, write down all the good things about reaching your goal.

If you run into a problem, sit down and think how you are going to work around it, or over it or through it.

Don't give up. Keep trying.

Things may not always work out, maybe you decide that your goal was unrealistic. That's OK. Learn from your mistakes, reset your goals and move on.

Affirmations and practising

goal setting
Tell yourself many times every day that you are working towards your goal. This is called making affirmations (say aff-er-may-shuns) and it may sound like this: "I am getting better at learning division because, now that I know all my tables, it doesn't take as long, and I'm making fewer mistakes. I will soon be able to do division."

Decide on a time-line so that you are aiming at finishing each small step by the date set. Then you can also say, "I'm on time and on track to reach my goal."



Revisit your goals

goal settingIf you meet a problem, look back at your steps and add in any more steps that you can take to keep you going. It doesn't matter if they are small steps. You might decide that putting a copy of the multiplication (times) table you are learning all round the house will help you learn faster (on the back of the toilet door may be a good place). You might ask mum or dad or your friends to test the table with you in the car or on the bus or when you are at the playground.

Make sure you check off each step. It will help you to keep going - how good does it feel to see a row of ticks marching along to your goal?

Things to remember

  1. Be realistic, set small goals to start with, you can move to the bigger stuff when you get better at setting and reaching goals.
  2. Keep feeling positive. Don't let other people put you off.
  3. Check your time line every day and read through your goal again.
  4. Believe you can do it.
  5. Keep adding more small steps if it doesn't look like you're making a lot of progress.
  6. Tell someone you trust about what you are doing. Talking about it will keep you feeling good and help you to work out your steps, what to learn and who can help.
  7. Don't stress. Learn to relax so that you have the energy to work through the steps.

Dr Kate says

Dr KateLife can be very busy. It is good to take time to think about what you want to do in your life. Then you feel like you are really living your life and not just letting life happen to you.  Everyone can make choices.

You can choose to work towards the choices you make for yourself.

I dream

I dream
One day I'll do it,
One day I'll live my dream,
One day I'll make it.

It's been two years,
I've practised,
Day after day,
"Practice makes perfect,"
I say to myself.

I dream,
Of becoming a musician,
Screaming out MY name,
Having posters of ME on THEIR walls.

Meeting famous people,
Travelling the world,
Fans crowding round,
Performing live,
I dream.

One day I'll have it all,
Have the power,
To perform,
One day.

Andrea K

playing the guitar


"He's an overnight success."
"She's an instant star."
If that's what you are waiting for,
then you won't get very far.

Behind each truly famous person
lies work, for years not hours.
They've worked towards their goals
through thorns as well as flowers.

And every time they failed
they got up and tried once more, 
or found a different pathway
to reach that distant shore. 

So work out what your goals are, 
plan the steps you need to take. 
Feel proud of your achievements,
sacrifices that you make.

We cannot all be famous,
more successful than the rest.
But, we all can feel the joy
of having done our best.
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We've provided this information to help you to understand important things about staying healthy and happy. However, if you feel sick or unhappy, it is important to tell your mum or dad, a teacher or another grown-up.


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