Learner Goal-Setting

Planning to Reach a Knowledge Destination

In the same way you wouldn't embark on a trip without a clear picture of your destination and a plan for how to get there, RVS students don't embark on a learning journey without a goal. According to a study of college students reported in the Journal of Applied Psychology, a student's goal-setting ability helps them achieve better grades, lowers dropout rates and increases wellbeing in adulthood.

Studies on goal-setting with elementary school children found the practice not only boosted student achievement, but boosted the child's faith in their own abilities. They were able to monitor their own progress better and celebrate achievement.

At the beginning of learning, RVS students discuss their learning goals with their teacher and may even look at samples of previous student work to get a clear picture of what they would like to achieve.

Once they have a clear vision of their goal, they can work with their teacher to plan the work they'll need to do to get there. Their strategies for getting to the destination may be different, because each will start at a different place and each brings different strengths and learning preferences to the journey.

In the early years, goals are simple and short-term. By high school, though, this practice in goal-setting is put to work setting larger career and life goals.

Learning goals and the learner portfolio are key tools for students as they embark on their learning journey. Parents have a role to play in goal setting as well, discussing goals at parent/student/teacher conferences and signing off on the student-set learning goal on the report card.


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