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Q: Should resolutions and goals be encouraged in the New Year? 

A: Rather than set resolutions, I find it more helpful to reevaluate and establish goals for a new year -- and young learners can be encouraged to do the same. 

Perhaps it’s a matter of semantics but making New Year’s resolutions has never been my jam. The idea of proclaiming strong declarations seemed too rigid for my personal taste. Resolute denotes a heaviness that my life couldn’t carry as a mother, career woman, educator and advocate. I learned very early: working with children is not conducive to rigid structures.


Helping children identify what’s important to their growth and development should be fun, interesting and kid-friendly. Areas that are significant to an adult, such as health and wellbeing, financial empowerment and special interests, can be explained at a child’s level of understanding. 

For example, a goal to “get more exercise” for an adult can be defined more clearly as “run around and play outside for thirty minutes a day” to a child. Or an adult’s “explore new hobbies” for a child may mean “learn a new dance routine and perform for the family.” Simplistic but achievable goals that are kid-friendly and interesting will promote setting goals into adulthood. 

Parents and teachers can help with offering a challenge goal to push personal growth. One challenge goal I have this year is to eat fewer sweets. Perhaps for a young learner their challenge goal can focus on behavior management or at-home responsibilities. 

Be sure to celebrate and encourage throughout the year to show importance of monitoring and accomplishing them. 



Mrs. Pizzo

From Mrs. Pizzo's Workshop 

Robin Pizzo leads the education outreach efforts of WKAR Public Media at Michigan State University, the PBS and NPR affiliate serving Michigan's capital region. Robin convenes partnerships and coordinates station initiatives such as WKAR Family and Ready to Learn to bring workshops, learning tools, and other resources into the community to help kids be resilient, lifelong learners.
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