Sunday, February 07, 2010

Lofty Goals

Some homeschoolers set lofty goals. They see no harm in shooting for the stars, achieving as much as possible. After all, no harm done if you fail at the goals, right? You've achieved more by setting high goals (and "failing") than you would've achieved if you set lower goals and actually met them.

Other homeschoolers set smaller goals that they're pretty sure they can meet. Whatever they do beyond that is gravy.

Right now I'm reading a book about social-skills curriculum and perspective taking. The author describes that social skills can be learned by folks with autism or VCFS or any number of other impairments. She discusses that the ability to learn these skills is on a continuum: some people just won't get it, some learn with great difficulty, some can learn relatively easily, and then there are the neuro-typical folks who learn social skills and perspective taking naturally. The author discussed recognizing the limitations that some children face:

Some parents express concern that by acknowledging that their child will not completely resolve his or her social/communication challenges, they are giving up "hope" for their child's future. I believe the opposite. Realistic hope helps us focus proactively on how services can help the child progress beyond his or her current level. In my experience, members of the treatment team who have unrealistic expectations often put unreasonable pressure on the child, parents, and supporting professionals. This creates stress and even animosity related to establishing and carrying out the treatment plan.

Thinking About You Thinking About Me: Teaching Perspective Taking and Social Thinking to Persons with Social Cognitive Learning Challenges; Michelle Garcia Winner, 2007, page 4.

1 comment:

  1. Communicating lofty goals and high expectations for your kid is a complete and unmitigated disaster when said child is a perfectionist. They look at the sky-high goals you have and they give up.

    If you've got a laid-back, roll-with-the-punches kid, then high expectations gives them something to shoot for, and it works well.