The transition to a new calendar year is an opportune time for reflection. Language learners can be made aware of their progress and be reminded of the responsibility they share with you, their teachers, for a successful learning outcome. One way to do this is by writing observations and goals. Ask students to consider the following questions and share their thoughts with you in writing.
1. Where my English WAS
Describe your English 6 months ago.
2. Where my English IS
Describe your English now. What are your strengths and weaknesses?
What have you done or what have you been doing to improve your English?
3. Where my English WILL BE
What do you want to be able to do in English in one year?
What will you do to reach your language goal(s)?
How can your teacher(s) help you reach your language goal(s)?
So far, I’ve only mentioned how the Goals Sheet benefits the language learner. However, there are certainly advantages for the teacher, too. Knowing how your students view their language learning experience can help you develop your general approach to teaching ESL and plan lessons on a day-to-day basis. You’ll be better able to modify your set of teaching strategies to accommodate their learning preferences, and you’ll be more aware of their wants and needs as you choose topics and activities.