Five Life Hacks to Getting Straight “A’s” in School & in Life
1. Set a S.M.A.R.T. GOAL for the semester:
Helping your child set a GOAL helps your child understand that results are only going to come with action. Using the S.M.A.R.T. method of goal setting will help you create a goal with your child that is unique to them. We take more ownership of our goals when we help create them!
Problem: What is the reason you are seeking help for your child? Why does your child want help?
-A parent suggests: “My daughter lacks confidence in Math and this is making her hate Math.”
Specific: What will your child be doing step-by-step?
What does your child want to accomplish? State exactly what they want to achieve.
-“My daughter’s lack of confidence in Math stems from the feeling that she doesn’t understand the material. Therefore, our goal would be to have her understand the material.”
Measurable: How will your child know you’ve reached their goal?
How will your child ‘see’ when they’ve reached their goal? Establish clear definitions to help them ‘see’ when they’ve reached their goal.
-“I would like to get an A which will measure my understanding of the material.”
Attainable: Is the goal possible with these actions?
What steps does your child need to do to accomplish this goal?
-“I will make a plan, assemble a team, know I will fail, and incorporate my passions to accomplish this goal.”
Relevant: Is it tied to real life for them?
Is this goal ‘doable’ for your child based on where they are in this moment? Ensure that the goal is not easy, nor too hard of stretch. Within the plan, be sure to account for obstacles that need to be overcome.
-“This is a realistic goal for me because I will build an action-oriented plan that will break down what I need to do in order to accomplish my goal.”
Time-Bound: What is the timeline for achieving this goal?
How much time does your child need to complete the task? Define exactly when they’ll start and finish the goal.
-“I will begin today with writing this goal out and I will complete my Math course with an A by the end of the semester, which is Jan 15, 2019.”
2. Make a PLAN to successfully reach that goal.
This plan needs to prioritize & schedule the daily activities that are needed to accomplish the goal. Do they know how to prioritize and schedule? Teach them these essential skills or find someone who can! What times can you put aside to do these daily activities alongside them?
Daily Activities include:
- Reverse Homework
- Daily Review of Notes & Customization of Notes
3. Determine who is on your child’s TEAM that can help assist with the goal & build a RELATIONSHIP.
A team is essential in accomplishing a goal. Who in your child’s world can help them strive for their goal? This can be family members, teachers, friends, and/or tutor. These people can play the role of accountability partner, study buddy, translator, and/or cheerleader!
It is important to build rapport and have open communication with your child and their team members when working towards a goal. Have you taken the time to reach out to their teachers? Have you asked a family member or friend who they are close with to be a support for them? Have you recognized that to accomplish this goal, you may need to bring in some outside help?
4. Realize that there will be MISS TAKES made on the path to achieve the goal.
“Fail early and fail often” is a motto in the work we, at Tutoring…With A Twist, do with kids. Why? We are so programmed to think that failing is bad. But when a child fails it helps us understand really quickly what they most need help with!
When you normalize failing as part of the learning process, the next time your child isn’t successful at something, they will just see it as a step on their path to reaching their goal, as opposed to a stopping point.
So, from Take 1 to Take 101, we will be there!
5. Include their PASSIONS and the way they LEARN as part of the goal journey.
When we connect a passion to something we are doing, it becomes more meaningful and interesting to us. So if your child loves to dance, and is struggling with Math, spend some time exploring with them how related Math and dance are.
Our brains all fire in different ways. When your child understands how their brain fires in relation to how they learn, they can figure out ways specific to them that will help them to retain the information.
Yes, this takes commitment, focus and creating habits…but guess what? Go through this process for one goal, like building your child’s confidence in Math, and you can use it for any goal they want to accomplish related to school or life.
AND, you’ve just set them up for success in life because you’ve taught them this. Oh, yes, I see a Parent of the Year Award coming your way!