Welcome to Down Home, San Luis Obispo Classical Academy’s blog! We are a classical school offering options to make education work for families. We have a full hybrid program for grades pre-12, which means part-time classroom and part-time home instruction with a 4 day option for middle school and a university model high school. This blog is meant to support and encourage on the home front because in so many ways, the heart of what happens at SLO Classical Academy happens down home.

Semper discentes – always learning together.


On Setting Goals

We’ve done it! Today marks the end of the year 2018! We felt it would be an appropriate time to take a few moments and reflect on the past year. What was this year like for you? Looking back at the last 12 months, did you get to accomplish what you hoped to do? If you could go back and change some things, what would they be? What WONDERS do you have lined up for the next year?

What about for your student? Have you asked them these questions? For some parents, they may think our children are still too young to have this kind of conversation. For others, perhaps they think it’s never too early to start. Either way, we believe it’s worth at least a few minutes of contemplation.

Today we are going to tap into the power of setting goals. Decades of diverse research has shown the connection between goal setting and motivation. It’s also been said that setting goals encourages a growth mindset. Let’s look at some practical ways we can help fulfill our (and our students!) potential.

We found a terrific article over at We Are Teachers on this topic and we’d like to share a few of their favorite resources. Though the article was primarily written for teachers with students in a classroom setting, we felt it was still relevant to our home educators and can be easily transposed to a home learning environment.

1. Their first tip is defining what a goal means.

Most of us know it means but for some of our younger kids, they may need clarification on the difference between a goal and a wish. Using books to portray goal setting is helpful in gaining this understanding.

{photo by Cheryl McCabe}

“For younger students, you may need to start by distinguishing between a goal and a wish. I wish for a giant bowl of ice cream every evening around 8 PM, but my goal this year is to stay hydrated by drinking 100 ounces of water each day. Sigh. A read aloud like Froggy Rides a Bike by Jonathan London can help make this distinction clear. Froggy wishes he could own a cool trick bicycle, but his goal is to learn to ride a bike—which it turns out he’s able to achieve with persistence and despite a few classic “more red in the face than green” moments.” -WeAreTeachers

2. Use SMART to unpack the goal-setting process.

Try out this lesson plan to get started or an even simpler (and smaller) one here.

{photo by Cheryl McCabe}

“Helping students hone their goal setting skills makes it more likely they will meet them. SMART goals have been a popular tool for years and many teachers have successfully implemented versions of this practice with their students.” -WeAreTeachers

3. Once you’ve got your plan, don’t forget to find a way to track it.

You can create your own visual tracking system or use online tools. This site gives you options on some of the best apps out there.

{photo by PxHere}

“Progress monitoring systems are motivating, and they are a crucial component of goal-setting work.” -WeAreTeachers

4. Last, and certainly not least, celebrate!!!

Who doesn’t love a chance to be recognized for an achievement? Make celebration a habit!

{photo by PxHere}

“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.” -Henry David Thoreau

There you go, friends! For those of you thinking about goals for 2019, we hope this post helps with your planning. May your day be filled with inspiration and vision for what’s ahead!

Happy New New Year!!!



SLO Classical Academy is not affiliated with any of the above-mentioned websites, businesses or organizations.

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