It's the time of year for setting goals and making resolutions and it's not just for adults. It's important to help children begin the habit of setting goals and understanding how goal setting can lead to goal achievement. One fun and creative way to do this with younger elementary age children is to encourage them to pick one word for the year and then create a vision board around that word.
Children are naturally creative and naturally confident of their ability. Ask any class of kindergartners if they can draw or sing or dance and every hand goes up. Ask a class of high school students and you may get a few hands in the air. As we get older we become much more critical of our abilities and much less willing to venture into experiences where we don't excel. Making a vision board is an activity that engages young and old alike.
We begin by picking our one word and deciding how to incorporate that one word into the board. Next each student is given a small piece of poster board. Vision boards can be illustrated with pictures, photographs, and words. I bring in lots of magazines and let them create to their hearts content. It is usually one of their favorite activities.
Lots of people are talking about the benefits of choosing one word. Here is an interview with motivational speaker, Jon Gordon on the Today Show about the benefit of one word to inspire you throughout the upcoming year:
Last year, I created a vision board for my word for the year: JOY. It was great fun to create and took me back to my high school days when I loved to create collages. I like words and quotes as much as pictures taken from magazines. Once I make the board, I display it in a prominent place where I can reflect on it each morning as I review my goals and determine what I plan to accomplish for the day. It is surprisingly energizing and motivating to gaze at.
Visioning is of course a powerful tool for creating your future and this is one way to be creative and playful at the same time. Even young children can create vision boards about what they want to accomplish in the next school year, over the summer, or when they grow up. It is a fun way for families to interact over shared goals and becomes a visual reminder each day of what the individual or family is about.
What about you? Have you ever created a vision board? How do you use visualizing to achieve goals?
Some great books on visioning: