I hope you are all well and enjoying the rays of sunshine that have shown themselves this week. School has again been a busy place this week with the final preparations for our first community event, the Fun Run. If you haven’t managed to purchase your tickets yet, please head to the Childrens’ Gate and you’ll find the lovely Emma Denton ready to take your money in exchange for a ticket.
Our wonderful Year 7 and Year 10 students teamed up this week to start their Big Brother projects, whilst our Year 8 explored poverty across the world. The Year 9 continue to develop their ideas for their pending Year 5 lessons in a few weeks and our Year 11 finalise their plans for their service partners fundraiser. I had the privilege of joining Year 12 in their Economics lesson this week where I was grilled on stakeholder responsibility and the Year 13 continue to study Food and Health in Geography.
There has been lots of chatter around school this week about goal setting, whether that be with staff starting their Personal Improvement Plans (PIP) or the students setting goals after their initial few weeks. I look back across the years and laugh at some of the goals I have set and remember fondly the times I have achieved my targets but more often the times I have fallen short. I’m sure I am not on my own when I say that moments after I set goals I am resolute in succeeding, I set my goal with a positive attitude, a determined mindset and a renewed determination only to then decide to start tomorrow(!). I mentioned last week that aside from mindfulness, there are other tools we are introducing to the students and goal setting is another tool in their toolkit of life strategies. I’d like to delve a little deeper into this topic with a hope you and I can benefit just as our children will from this approach.
Right, for starters ditch your preconceived ideas of New Year Resolutions (we all know they don’t work!) and come with an open mind. I would love to inform you I have conquered this approach but along with the students, I am still learning. Allow me to share what I have learned thus far. Contrary to popular belief, research shows positive thinking doesn’t work nearly as well as we would hope. Envisioning you are going to clinch that great job usually ends with getting fewer job offers for instance. Over the last 20 years research continues to show that merely dreaming about our future not only decreases our chances of achieving our goals but actually negatively affects our mental health and overall well-being. However, I am not going to preach ‘down with dreaming!’ but instead offer the suggestion that adding a WOOP! to our dream can positively impact performance and outcome.
Yes, I did indeed write WOOP! It wasn’t a typo. WOOP! is a goal setting model we are using in Key Stage 3 and I’d like to share it with you:
W – What is your desired wish?
O – What do you want/need as the outcome?
O – What obstacles stand in the way of reaching your outcome?
P – What is the plan?
I like this four step plan, it’s fun, easy and crosses all life domains. By implementing these four steps, our mind strengthens it’s mental associations without our awareness which is super useful as it uses less energy than dreaming about our goals. This increased energy in turn allows for better performance. The science of automating cognition, emotion and behaviour triggers us to become motivationally intelligent. Whilst more common sense than rocket science I have come up with a few WOOP! goals of my own and I challenge you to try it too… come join me, it’ll be fun and hopefully satisfying, fulfilling and ultimately successful!
Whilst a weak link, one of my WOOP! goals is to become a more proficient skier. If this is something your child/ren would also like to achieve remember we have a BSM ski trip to Verbier and I believe they have a few more places left! For more details email firstname.lastname@example.org
Have a wonderful weekend, I hope to see you on Sunday at the Fun Run!
Next week is Week A.