Bringing In a New Year!

With the New Year and thinking of Resolutions–what a great time to try and motivate our students to think about setting goals.  We know our students need hugs and positive reinforcement but they also need accountability paired with that positive reinforcement. Our students need us to model what positive behaviors are, how to set goals and most of all showing them how we hold ourselves accountable while meeting goals. So, with all the testing happening in the New Year and our focus on getting back into the routine–I compiled some ideas to set goals, reflect and jump start data notebooks in short lessons that can be completed at anytime–even when someone is covering your class!  With all this data floating aroundc8a0c1bbcde9bea244fb5c729ebb57ee–maybe we can catch some of it and help our kids see the importance of finding out what they can do!  I found this song and the lyrics on the Third Grade Bookworm Blog–What I am!   I know our K-2 would love it!  A great reminder–we are the person we show others. 3-5 could work with the lyrics–maybe even taking the song and as a writing lesson–amping it up for older kids to another song.

A few fun activities to think about Goals: 

Resolution Wreath (from Activity Village)

Handprint/Resolutions/Poem (from

Reaching for the Stars (from Bayside Math Teacher Blog)

Having students reflect on who they are, what they like and how they learn is a good way for them to understand we all have strengths and weaknesses.  Weaknesses are our opportunities to improve.  Having students take a multiple intelligence test is a great way to let them find out about themselves and for you to gain insight.

3-5 Online Test

Online Multiple Intelligence Test K-2 would have to read aloud

Laura Candler’s Multiple Intelligence Test printable

Once the test is complete, they can write or draw a letter to their parents about how they learn best. How fun would it be to mail it home!  Putting this information in their data notebooks and reminding students that they like to work alone but by working with partners, they are retraining their brain and it is helping them learn.

A great K-2 activity is to have students find sight words, tally how many times they find each one and then create a bar graph.  This is reinforcing sight words and math!  You can combine it with partner reading of the words and a competition to record how fast they can read the list or how many words in a minute. Great fun and learning.


Find Tally and Graph  I created this one and you could change the sight words out to create others.

3-5 classes could do a paper chain challenge where a group has to create the longest paper chain from one sheet of 12 x 18 piece of construction paper.  After the challenge–students can figure out some math and collect data to see how to use data.  How many chains were created in all? What was the difference in the shortest and longest? What is the average length?  What is the range?  What is the median number of chains?  You can look deeper at colors and ask similar questions.

Students need to see why we collect data and how it can be important. When we show them this–they can understand why they collect data about multiplication, sight words or why you progress monitor.   Ring in the New Year with some data fun!

Other Resources You May Be Interested in…


Priorities and Goals

Graphing Stories website














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