On not shooting for the stars

On starting in public schools, I got thinking about goal setting. A lot. I used to be one of those people who thought that a worthy goal was a lofty goal. Still, even with my study, my goal is to score 100% on each piece of work, and it I score less than that in any one section, against the rubric, I fixate on how to bring my mark up, even by 1%. I still think goals should be measurable, but now, when it comes to helping others, I think they should be meaningful. 1% isn’t going to change my life, and it’s time for me to start walking the walk. This year my goals are going to be measurable and meaningful. Here they are:

1. Be accountable. This is measurable. I am accountable to my school, my boss, my students and their parents. This can be as simple as having my performance assessed by all of these parties via a five minute Survey Monkey. It’s meaningful because I can see what needs improvement and all of the interested parties know, even just by the act of me asking them to assess me, that I have invested in them. Goodwill is currency that I can save or spend.

2.  Get one tiny ‘applied learning’ program running. This is trickier. It may require free junk food to entice chosen students to give up a lunch time. Hey, I’m a realist! Breaking this goal down into a proper proposal may help me find a solution. I am debating whether this will be a female school leaver’s self esteem and employment readiness program or cash (register) numeracy. I am aiming for mid way through third term for this.

I hope I am able to follow my own lead on this. Small is beautiful. (Image of said junk food by Dawn Tan. Available in melamine here.)



2 thoughts on “On not shooting for the stars

  1. Hi,
    I think your idea to give people the opportunity to do a Survey Monkey on you is very brave and worthwhile. I would caution not to take all (negative) comments to heart because I imagine that a minority of students and parents can be quite harsh when they know everything is anonymous; I especially remember that as a student I probably was not as fair on some of my teachers as I should have been despite that I appreciated the opportunity to provide feedback to them. I think a lot can depend on the way you present the survey.
    I would also say that you might benefit more by receiving feedback directly from your boss as opposed to via a survey, even if that means taking the initiative to set an appointment time with them yourself if they don’t regularly do this for staff. Often bosses have something to say but keep it in the bag for end-of-year discussions, when something could have been addressed and improved your teaching much earlier.
    Thanks for the post,

    • thepomoslso says:

      Hi Anna,

      Actually I agree, the medium for surveying should suit the surveyor. And I wouldn’t allow anonymous responses. I have only a few kids under my tuition so it would be counter productive not to know from whom the response is from.
      I may post my survey template here when the time comes, for reader feedback.
      Thanks for commenting!

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