A GLAD® Goal That Brings You Joy

I admit, I’m one of those people who wait until the beginning of a new year, a new month or a new week to launch a new habit or goal. I just love that feeling of a fresh start. 

And yes, I have dozens of half finished journals around the house. Each one heralding a fresh start with a habit I’m still working on actually becoming a habit.

If you’ve been in our coaching courses or training, we will tell you, 

“Any day and every day can be a fresh start.” 

It’s true.  But there’s nothing quite so encouraging as a NEW YEAR to push the reset button. 

As educators, we get to experience the impact of a January new beginning in the middle of our school year. 

Wherever you are in your GLAD® journey, we invite you to make January a fresh start month!  The secret is to make that fresh start something that will last longer than my unfinished journals. 

This week at Costco, I ran into a retired teacher who started reminiscing about her GLAD® training.  “It really is the golden ticket,” she said.  “But I just couldn’t do it all.”  Her inflection carried a tone of failure.  

You don’t have to do it all.  

And you don’t have to do it perfectly. 

Perhaps what our fresh start really needs is a fresh set of self expectations.  

Back to my half-finished journals.  Could it be I put too much pressure on myself to journal EVERY DAY and that’s why I kept having to start over?  What would happen if I start my new journal this year (of course, I already bought a beautiful new one) with an achievable goal to jot or sketch something once a week? 

If I do more, yay for me.  If not, it’s OK.  

There’s nothing sweeter than the taste of authentic success to keep the ball rolling and a habit growing.  

This January, choose a new GLAD® goal that is achievable. 

Achieving that goal will bring you joy and give you the impetus to keep going!   



Consider one of these fresh start Project GLAD® goals: 

  • Increase my intentionality with color coding
  • Add visuals to my lessons each day
  • Take daily risks with sketching
  • Invite students to “say it with me” multiple times during the day
  • Add a signal word and gesture (daily or even just weekly to start)
  • Use a chant to teach vocabulary with each new unit
  • Practice heads together before calling on individual students (or numbered heads)
  • Write a few sentence stems at the beginning of each new unit

Write your goal where you will see it every day. 

You might share your goal with your students and post it for everyone to see.

Keep your goal alive by writing a word of encouragement on your goal reminder as you practice it. Students will quickly catch on and become a part of this process.  (Growth mindset!)

Want to level up a bit more with strategy specific goals? 

Consider joining an Acceleration cohort for some strategy refreshers or extensions.  Either dig in for clock hours or just have fun with fresh ideas and encouragement. 

Next week Jan 16th, begins a new 6 week cohort for Acceleration 201: Vocabulary Boost. 

We’ll be pushing reset with 7 power packed vocab strategies: 

  • Teacher Made Big Book 
  • Cognitive Content Dictionary
  • Chants
  • Sentence Patterning Chart
  • Reading Game
  • Trading Game
  • Flip Chant
  • BONUS - ABC Book 

In March we’ll run two more Acceleration cadres: Read All About It and Take it to Writing. 

Acceleration 301: Read All About It is a 6 week course highlighting our favorite narrative strategies: 

  • Narrative Input Chart
  • Story Map
  • ELD Group Frame
  • Cooperative Strip Reading
  • Ear to Ear Reading 
  • Listen and Sketch


Acceleration 401: Take it to Writing is an 8 week cohort focusing on the strategies: 

  • Planning Grid
  • Pictorial Input Chart
  • Learning Log
  • Expert Groups
  • Process Grid
  • Cooperative Strip Paragraph
  • Whole Class Group Frame 

Remember, you don’t have to do it all to make a big difference! 

Choose a goal that is inviting, achievable and will provide the motivation of authentic success to keep moving forward. 

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to jot down some ideas in my new journal! 


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