It’s that time of year again. The beginning. A new beginning. A time for reflection and setting goals. A blog post passed through my inbox about this very topic – resolutions – authored by an educator who I follow for inspiration and critical self reflection. He suggests two sorts of goals: product goals, with which we’re most familiar (e.g., lose 10 lbs, write a novel); and process goals, which point to changing habits (e.g., read 30 minutes a day, write 250 words a day).

I’ve certainly compared products and processes before, but I’ve not considered the two as they relate to learning goals.

About a week later, a blog post from another favourite educator comes along to suggest a 30 Day Blogging Challenge. The rules are process goals: 

  1. Write ___ words every day. 
  2. Create ___ blog posts each week.

My goals are 250 words a day and 2 blog posts a week. 

So… here goes something. (I wonder if I’ll have enough interesting thoughts to share.)

In less than a week’s time I return to my fourth grade classroom and we’ll be talking together about this very topic – reflection and goal setting – as we return to the hopes and dreams we crafted back in September. I wonder what it would be like for students to create process goals, rather than product goals. What would it mean for a child how might have said, “I hope to become better at multiplying and dividing,” to instead commit to “My goal is to play a math game every evening”?

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