Goals Lead to Motivation

Thursday, October 4, 2018
Welcome to Week 8 of our book study!  Make sure you check out our giveaway to be entered to receive our current and next reading series books!  Today's topic is goal setting to increase motivation with Chapter 8 of Learning to Love Math by Judy Willis (affiliate links in post).

Brain research tells us that our students are not naturally able to use the executive function of long-term goal setting until their 20s.  This leaves room for us to teach and guide them into goal setting.  Allow students to see the interest in what you are about to teach to help them "buy in" to what the next unit of study is.  This could be by creating a KWL chart that will clearly show needs and at the end of the unit, learning, or focus on a really neat real-world application of the unit to help students see the value in what they are about to learn.

Helping students see a connection is one of the greatest ways to motivate.  Help them connect their own goals to the learning objectives that you are teaching.  Make sure your activities are high interest and pleasurable.  Choice is something that often keeps student interest because they have ownership in their learning.  This needs to be something that is gradually introduced and taught so students are successful.  Some examples of including a simple choice board can be found here and here.

As a special education teacher, I really like the idea of goal setting.  My students know that we are working on certain goals and objectives all year round in the hope of increasing their skills.  In their meetings, we point out how these are important for their life and the job they want to have.  Helping them see success in goals is important.  Use graphs, online tracking tools, charts, and yes, sometimes you may even want to throw in some rewards.  To measure success you can use percentages, rubrics, or any other measurement tool you have in your arsenal.  Students need to see the gains they are making to continue to want to make and put effort towards them.

As always,  be an example of a math lover and for even more strategies, join us in this book study!


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