As a goal-setter, you know the excitement and pride of accomplishing a goal that you’ve worked hard to achieve. It’s not only a fantastic feeling, but it’s overall good for your well-being to set and reach goals. If you’re a parent or teacher, you may think about how you can help the children in your life do and feel the same.

It’s possible to help kids set, work towards, achieve goals. So let’s talk about how you can set your children up for success.

Explain the Whys and Hows of Goal Planning

For a child to do something, they need an understanding of it. So, you need to explain goal-setting at their level. Here are some examples of things you can say:

  • Goals help us do things we love or are important to us
  • Achieving a goal is like eating your favorite food or playing with your favorite toy!
  • Happy people set goals to keep them happy.
  • A goal helps you become the best person you can be!

Once you establish the why of goal-setting, you need to explain to the child how to set and reach goals.

Set Age-Appropriate Goals

It’s crucial to consider your child’s age when setting goals. However, for all ages who are new to goal-setting, it’s good to start small. What are things your child shows interest in? How can we make goals that make sense for them? Here are some goals for different age groups.

  • Ages 2-4: Picking up all their toys, eating all their food, sharing one toy a day.
  • Ages 5-7: Learn to write their name, make a new friend, dress themselves for a week.
  • Ages 8-10: Learn to ride a bike, try an extracurricular activity, set the table at home
  • Ages 11+: Get an A in school, keep their room clean, complete a craft project

It helps to sit down with your child and talk through ideas on goals. Then, be specific, create a visual to help them understand their goals, develop an action plan, and celebrate achievement!

Establish a Reward System

Positive reinforcement is one of the best tools a parent or teacher has when working with goal-setting. Just like adults, a reward can motivate a child to take steps to reach their goals. Each goal should have some sort of reward that the child responds with.Think of things that would make them excited and allow them even to choose their rewards. 

Some reward examples could be a new toy, watching their favorite movie, or even the feeling of accomplishing that goal they were excited about. Don’t forget to celebrate! It’s essential to set up the precedent that setting and achieving goals is good by making them feel happy about doing so.  

Have Support from a Goal Accountability Coach

We all want the best for our children, which drives you to want to help them with goal-setting. It may help them later in life when they are at the age to set their own goals. If you need assistance working with children to set goals, I’m here to help! 

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