​SMART Goals to Enrich Your Teaching Practices and Your Life


This year, instead of making broad resolutions that are easily broken, consider making SMART goals. SMART goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound objectives that will provide you with a direct path to achieve success. Since SMART goals are targeted and time-bound, you will be more likely to stick with them and achieve success. Click here to learn more about SMART goals.

The SMART goals suggested below should be attainable for all teachers. A suggested timeframe is included, but consider adjusting these based on your needs.

  1. By January 26th, my weekly lesson plans will be completed by the Thursday before they are due.

    Planning ahead is important, but many of us tend to procrastinate, especially when it comes to writing lesson plans. Make it a best practice to complete your lesson plans one week in advance. By doing this, you can enjoy the last moments of your weekend rather than scrambling to accomplish your planning for the week ahead.

  2. By February 6th, I will arrange my schedule to build in at least one hour of “me” time every day.

    “Me” time is important, especially for teachers. When we pack too much into our schedules and deny ourselves valuable “me” time, it can lead to burn out. It’s important to learn that it is okay to say “no” and to take a break. Take a look at your schedule during the first few months of the year and decide how you can free up time to read a book, watch a show, or pamper yourself each day.

  3. By March 31st, my files will be organized and I will discard outdated materials.

    Many of us keep everything we’ve created, thinking we will use it again. This results in our file cabinets becoming overcrowded and disorganized. Choose a month for you to downsize and organize. If you have multiple copies of handouts, keep only one copy. An even better alternative may be to create digital files. Just be sure to back up what you have saved onto a hard drive!

  4. By April 14th, I will have called/emailed/written to at least six parents for positive reasons.

    One of the things that parents complain about is how they seldom hear from the school or teachers unless there is a problem. Make it a best practice to contact at least two parents every month with a positive message about their child. A phone call about a child performing a kind act or improving on a challenging test or lesson can be uplifting to a parent. By contacting parents for positive reasons, you will establish a positive rapport. Then, when you need to talk to parents about how their child needs to make improvements, they will be more likely to support you. In addition, you will find that these positive communications will lift your own morale!

  5. By May 1st, I will learn something new about integrating technology into my classroom.

    Today’s students are digital natives, and they love to use technology in the classroom. Try something new with technology this month, like incorporating a classroom website that students contribute to or introducing virtual pen pals. For more ideas to incorporate technology in your classroom, take a look at our course Essential Classroom Technology for Teachers.

  6. By June 1st, I will sign up for a course that will enhance my teaching.

    Every teacher can learn new strategies and techniques to enrich their teaching. Enroll in an online or in-person course and learn something new. For a full list of online and print Advancement Courses, take a look at our website.

What are your SMART goals for 2017? Share your ideas with us on our Facebook page. 

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