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Teaching Your Kids Goal-Setting with 7 Simple Steps

Teaching Your Kids Goal-Setting with 7 Simple Steps

We’ve always had an agreement with the boys about grades and they knew our expectations. Recently, I wondered if goal-setting was something they consciously understood, so we set out to make goal-setting a simple habit for our family.

As this school year started, we decided the boys should have goals that encompass the whole person – mind, body and spirit, one for each. Based on that framework, our steps were:

– Sitting down to discuss their interests, what they thought they were good how they could improve on those interests.

– Using this information, we set SMART goals (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely). For example, two of the boys are working toward becoming Eagle Scouts. One of their goals was: “To earn 12 badges (specific, measurable and achievable) before next summer camp (relevant) in order to make Eagle rank by August 2020 (timely).”

– Based on the goal, we mapped out a plan for achievement (strategy). We reviewed the calendar of classes and campouts at which he could earn these badges before the August 2020 due date.

– Keep their eyes on the prize. With scouting, the badges are sewn on a sash the boys wear as part of their uniform. This keeps their end goal very visual. Consider placing a timeline with achievements marked on a corkboard in the child’s room or on the refrigerator. This is an uplifting way for them to visually track their progress.

– Set some time aside to review progress on the goals. Do this during some of your already planned family time.

– Use storytelling to help kids understand the benefits of achieving the goal. In our example, earning the rank of Eagle Scout helps open doors during many job interviews. This helps your kiddos understand the value of the goals they are striving to achieve.

– Choose mentors who have worked hard to achieve greatness. Talk about that person from time to time as a reminder. Remind them that they too had to set goals to get where they are now. It will help your kids to have a role model. When talking to them about goal setting – showcase some stories from your own life, a time when you saw goal setting pay off for you.


We all could use a little help achieving goals from time to time. Kids, especially, need to be encouraged through a goal setting process. However, helping the kids understand goal-setting has really pushed me to also form monthly and weekly goals – giving me something to work towards. With some direction and leading by example, your kids will be using these steps without even knowing it.

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As a mom who cares about eating good food and knowing the farmer who grew my food, I want to help other families to nourish your families with good, traceable, sustainable food.


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