Creating Class WOW Goals

We have really delved into goal-setting this year in our class and I have loved how our language has a class had changed. In years past, some students naturally set goals or worked to do better, but it was never a year-long focus for all students as it has been this year. While we are still experiencing some growing pains, I think overall the repeated exposure to goal-setting and goal-achieving has added a new dimension to our class conversations.

While we have worked a lot on individual goals, I wanted to develop a class-wide weekly goal to help keep us on the right track, especially this time of the year when we tend to get into a slump. We started on Friday during our goal-setting meeting to discuss whole-class what we wanted to work on to develop ourselves as leaders in our school. At first the ideas were very general: show the 7 Habits, follow class rules, be leaders not bosses, etc. But when we reviewed our SMART criteria, we really worked to narrow it down to make it specific and attainable.

What we decided was that we needed to work on Rule #1 and Rule #4 the most. Rule #1 is "Listen when your teacher is talking," and Rule #4 is "Make smart choices." *I have mixed and matched the Whole Brain Teaching and Teaching-ish rules to fit me best :)

Once we decided on that, we discussed how we would make it measurable. One way I sometimes track if I see/hear a group of students breaking a rule is to quickly say, "Rule #1" and the kids will reply back "Listen when your teacher is talking." while using gestures. One student suggested I do that, and it occurred to me that I had really let that practice slide this year (totally my bad!). It was a great suggestion and we knew that if I was calling out rules less by this time next week, we were moving closer to our goal. Now I just have to remember to stay on top of that ;)

I turned the one-pager into a poster by adjusting the print settings to 200% and taping the four pages together. I laminated it and used dry-erase markers so we can write on this week after week. For the freebie, keep reading...

I added a small part about "Follow your compass" to address the "smart" part of "Make smart choices." I reminded my students that all of them know what due north in our classroom looks like. The expectations are clear, the rules are reinforced, and I am very fortunate to be in a classroom full of great kids that truly want to do the right thing (this has not always been the case, so I feel extra lucky this year!). This doesn't mean they are immune to being tempted to verge off to the east or west, and sometimes even turn around and run due south. (And yes, I definitely squeezed in some geography into this! Ha!) I challenged my kids to remember their due north, specifically when choices arise that they know may take them off-course. I challenged them to stay committed to their compass and follow the path they knew to be the right course. We'll see how it goes next week, but I love the image of a compass and plan on planting one up on our front wall somewhere as a visual cue throughout the week :)

So next week's Class WOW Goal involves us all, including me, and I know that these small steps will help encourage us to demonstrate more leadership skills both independently and whole-group. I'll keep you posted on how it goes!

If you'd like a copy of the Class WOW Goals sheet, click HERE.

Find more Goal-Setting Posts here:


  1. Awesome! I just started SMART goals with my class two weeks ago. Thanks for the WOW poster!

  2. I love this idea, especially because setting and achieving goals is such an important habit to get into. I liked that you made them specific and attainable, and that you let students have a say in what they should focus on. This will motivate and encourage them to want to work towards them more. I wonder if you could give each student their own WOW card and let them set individual goals for the week as well.

    1. We do! I have a freebie template you can print on a sticky note if you'd like. You can read more about that here:

      Hope this helps and thanks for stopping by!