So what? Why is this important?
We all know the yearly cycle of a teacher. You begin the school year refreshed, reorganized, and ready to go. Then by October you can barely pick yourself off the floor and your desk is buried in papers. How do you keep momentum for the great ideas you developed over the summer? How do you make sure what you’ve learned doesn’t find itself collecting dust on the back shelf (literally and/or metaphorically)?
You’ve reflected. You’ve learned. You’ve planned. So what?
Step 1: The Stretch Goal
Take some time to sift through all the information that you’ve learned this summer. Organize it into bigger themes. Pick one or two ideas that really resonated with you. These become your stretch goals. These are the big ticket items you want to accomplish. The point of these is to push you to become a better educator.
- Incorporate the lessons from Make it Stick into classroom teaching.
- Improve our PLC effectiveness.
Step 2: SMART Goals
Now, turn these big ideas into smaller action items. How specifically are you going to put the concepts into action? These are your SMART goals. All educators are well-versed in SMART goals. The benefit of these, in this situation, is it breaks down your larger goal into smaller, more manageable tasks. As you accomplish one SMART goal, set another. This keeps you moving towards your stretch goal, and keeps your motivated to implement your ideas throughout the year, not just in September.
Some of my first SMART goals:
- Create a PowerPoint presentation that could be used for a PD session about the important information from Make it Stick.
- Next goal – Find a conference or opportunity to present to other teachers.
- Organize my research on meeting effectiveness into a meeting protocol.
- Next goal – Present protocol to grade level teams for use in team meetings.
Hopefully these two steps together will help me accomplish my goals, make myself a better educator, and improve student achievement.
What did you learn this summer that you are super excited about? How are you going to make sure you implement it?