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Goals: the View from October

Ahh, October. The leaves are falling, the wind is blowing, and we have officially settled into a new year here at UCDS. While for some October signifies an abundance of pumpkin-flavored treats, EDP Director Nicki Bowen reminds us that this is also a great time to take stock of our goals for the coming school year -Ed.

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Originally published October 24, 2016

As the new school year rapidly approached most educators were excitedly and frantically preparing for the arrival of the students. Though I’ve been very busy with practical preparation, I find this time of year it is also very important to refocus my intention and purpose. I’ve compiled a brief list of refocusing questions I like to ask myself at the beginning of and throughout each school year.

1. What are my goals this year? I understand that this is a VERY broad question. Over the last year, my role and environment have changed significantly. I have had to spend a fair amount of time pinpointing my new goals. As I’m already working to accomplish some of them, I feel that explicitly stating my goals helps me to be more effective. In past years, when I was a classroom teacher, my goals often revolved around my educational plans for my students. I do not work with students in an instructional environment anymore, so my goals this year are more internally focused and rely heavily on my individual effectiveness. This year I’m working to successfully hire and train teachers for the extended day program, attend more planning meetings so I can integrate subjects from the school day into EDP projects, and absorb as much of the school culture as possible.

2. Am I fully engaged and invested? I’m someone who finds myself very easily distracted and often caught up in the day to day life things. Bills. Family. Relationships. It’s very important for me to check in with myself and make sure that I am focused and present.

3. What gets me excited to go to school every day? This is one of the most important questions for me. I find that if I can focus on something that excites me each day, I’m much more effective and motivated. This list could be endless, but these three simple questions help motivate me and refocus my intention.