Happy New Year! One of the best things about being a teacher in January is giving your students (and yourself) a fresh start in the new year. You may have your own personal or professional New Year’s resolutions, but January is a time for your students to make their own goals as well. Each student may have different things to focus on in the new year, but here are New Year’s resolutions for your students this year.
Read, read, then read some more!
Whenever parents would ask me how to help their children improve as readers, I had a two word answer. READ MORE. Simply reading (anything) 20 minutes per day will help students improve their vocabulary and reading comprehension. Encourage your students to read things they enjoy and spend at least 20 minutes free reading each day in the new year. Whether it’s graphic novels, short stories, picture books with words, or chapter books, your students should just be reading. For students who struggle with independent reading, encourage them (and their parents) to read together each evening. Have your students record a new book to read in their New Year’s resolution brochure to start their New Year’s reading goals off right!
Make new friends.
The new year is a chance to make new friends! Have your students think about a new friend they want to make this year. Encourage your students to reach out to new students to the school or to find things they have in common with their classmates. Writing down their social goals on a New Year’s resolution brochure will help your students reach out to new friends.
Maintain or start healthy habits.
Early elementary is a perfect time to focus on health. Talk about healthy goals your students can share in their New Year’s resolution brochure . Exercise like running, biking, dancing, or yoga can give your students a physical fitness focus to keep them moving and grooving. Talk about healthy food choices and balance. It’s OK for students to have treats, but drinking water and eating fruits, vegetables, and healthy grains and proteins will help your students get the nutrients they need. It’s also never too soon to start talking about the dangers of drugs and alcohol. Making healthy choices starts with avoiding things bad for their bodies.
Try something new.
What do you want to learn or do this year? That isn’t a question that students get asked in school very often. Make it your New Year’s resolution to encourage your students to explore learning outside of the regular curriculum and talk about new things they want to try or learn beginning in January. One way to do this is with Genius Hour! (You can learn more about Genius Hour and reasons to try it on the blog!) Maybe this is the year they’ll learn to play the piano or bake a cake. Your students may want to learn more about other countries or animals. It could be the year they learn to ride a bike or try a new trick on a skateboard. There is a world of possibilities.
New year, new you doesn’t stop with your own personal and professional goals. Help set your students up for success with New Year’s resolutions for your primary students this year!