Where Am I Headed? Fall 2011 Goals

Creative Commons photo by Andrew Becraft (Dunechaser on Flickr)

Today I had the chance to read Jamie’s goals for the year over at Dontworryteach.  This was a good reminder for me, as I feel it is important to state your goals.  This will be an interesting year for me with a lot of change and adjustment.  Not only will I be going back to the classroom after two years as an instructional facilitator, I will have a new daughter (any day now!).  Stating my goals now before the chaos hits will hopefully help me to stay focused and roll with the punches a bit better.  Feel free to check up on me and ask me about my progress.

I tend to develop my goals on a quarter by quarter basis.  Since I will not be in my classroom the first quarter of this year, here are my goals for the first semester.

  • AssessmentI will be work to develop more effective assessments. This involves not only the method of assessment, but what I am assessing.  This is part of my quest to move in the direction of Standards Based Grading.  By focusing on improving assessments, I will also be working on better defining for my students exactly what it is I want them to be learning.
  • FeedbackI will provide students with more informative, specific and timely feedback. This can involve spoken or written comments and discussion.  I will go beyond “Good job!” and other vagaries to tell students exactly what is or is not working well.  This also ties in with Standards Based Grading as well as with my goal on improving assessments.  After all, what’s the point of a good assessment if the student doesn’t understand the results?
  • Parental CommunicationI will communicate more regularly with parents. My plan at the moment involves more frequent phone calls and email contacts for a variety of purposes and a blog site (which I realize parents may or may not utilize).  I want to be sure parents feel welcome in my classroom and comfortable communicating with me.  They are the experts on their children and an excellent resource.
  • Efficiency I will become more efficient with my planning time, grading, and various other responsibilities while maintaining quality standards. With so much changing in my life right now, I want to make sure I am doing a good job of balancing school and home life.  This will possibly be my most difficult challenge.

Have you tackled any of these things before?  What was your experience like?  I would appreciate any advice, resources or insights.  What are your goals?  I encourage you to post them here or elsewhere.

“I find the great thing in this world is, not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving…”

-Goethe

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3 thoughts on “Where Am I Headed? Fall 2011 Goals”

  1. Glad I could be a good reminder in this exciting time in your life! (I hope we get to see lots of cute baby pictures & hear about the new addition soon!)

    I like that you connected your goals to one another & kept them short, to the point & small in #. That is one of the biggest things Twitter has taught me, to be concise.

    You also reminded me to keep up good parent communication. I slacked on that last year & it definitely hurt my students. Good luck this semester!

  2. Hello!

    I too am a Social Studies teacher dabbling in the world of SBG. I just came across your blog and I was wondering what you’ve decided upon for your standards (or if you’ve done that yet!). I’ve had the same struggle identifying appropriate standards, but I think I’ve settled on some skills. I’m looking at tracking progress in “content knowledge” (the first level of Bloom’s Taxonomy), “critical thinking” (the higher levels) and “presentation skills” (which include the ability to present, discuss and debate). I’m thinking about breaking “critical thinking” down into the separate levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy, but I only get my kids for a trimester at a time and I’m concerned about having sufficient time for them to practice and assesss in multiple areas. I’m curious what your thoughts are on Social Studies standards and where you’re headed!

    Thanks so much,
    Jessica

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