New Year's resolutions for kids are a great way to teach children responsibility and the importance of working toward a goal. Setting resolutions need not be a chore; try to make it a fun family activity where all members of the household come up with their goals for the coming year.
Educational Value of New Year's Resolutions for Kids
The dawn of a new year is a good time to set goals. Setting resolutions of what a person wants to accomplish for the year is a time-honored tradition and a learning opportunity for kids. Determining resolutions for the year can help children work toward personal growth and goals for all areas of life, such as academics, sports and daily life activities. The educational benefits of New Year's resolutions include:
- Providing incentives for pursuing a goal, such as earning an A in math or making the soccer team.
- Teaching how to set a goal and how to work towards it.
- Determining resolutions can help kids find out more about themselves and what they want in life by figuring out what they want to achieve this year.
- Building academic skills, such having an early reader write out his or her list and read it, or allowing an older child to enhance math skills by keeping score on a resolution goal-tracking chart.
Ideas for New Year's Resolutions
New Year's resolutions can cover a large variety of topics and activities. Here are some examples of New Year's resolutions for kids:
- Keep the bedroom clean and always pick up toys after play
- Help wash the dishes after dinner
- Get an A in math
- Earn a Girl Scout Pet Care badge
- Take a babysitting class and begin babysitting
- Learn to swim
- Make the track team
- Dance in a dance recital
- Save up enough money to buy an iPod
- Get a summer job
- Write a letter every week to Grandma
- Learn to write cursive
- Stop teasing a sibling or classmate
To develop a set of New Year's Resolutions, it is important to tailor goals to each individual child. Here are some ideas to help develop a list of goals for the year:
- Ask your child what he wants to get accomplished this year. If he says he doesn't know, talk to him about different activities, special interests, chores or something he wants in order to help him figure out how those things can translate into goals.
- Write down any ideas you have for what you would like him to accomplish for the year, such as helping out around the house. Talk to him about the goal and figure out a resolution together.
- Don't hand your child a list of goals and instruct him to meet them. If your child is not actively involved in developing the resolutions, he will be less likely to keep them.
- Make the development of resolutions a fun family activity that everyone gets involved in. This should not seem like homework to your kid.
Helping Kids Keep Resolutions
People are always setting New Year's Resolutions, but few are able to keep them. For children, resolutions may be even harder to keep, and a year seems much longer when you are eight than when you are 38. Parents can help kids increase their chances of meeting their resolutions by doing the following:
- Make the resolutions a family contest. Whoever keeps their resolutions gets a prize. This turns New Year's resolutions into a game.
- Create incentives to accomplish the goals. Track your kid's progress over the year and reward him each time he reaches mini milestone toward accomplishing the goal.
- Talk to your children about your progress toward accomplishing your own New Year's resolutions. This reminds him of his own goals and makes it seem more like a team effort to keep everyone motivated.
Setting New Year's resolutions and meeting them can be very rewarding. Although keeping resolutions is difficult, children feel a great sense of accomplishment when they achieve their goals by the end of the year.