Setting New Year’s Resolutions with your children: A Guide to Family Goals and Growth

Setting New Year's Resolutions with your children: A Guide to Family Goals and Growth

As the year draws to a close, it is only natural to reflect on this. Whilst the idea of New Year’s Resolutions may be a bit much for young children, it’s never too early to begin teaching a child how to set a goal and work towards it or establish a beneficial routine. What’s important at this age is to not make it a pressure or unrealistic. Instead, you’ll want to make it fun and simple and teach your child that even if you get off track, it’s ok to start over again. Our Young Academics Centre Managers have provided some handy tips & tricks on how to set New Year’s Resolutions as a family.   


How to explain new year’s resolutions to children 

For children the idea of New Year’s Resolutions may be confusing, but it doesn’t have to be. Instead, simply explain it as making a commitment or setting a goal and how the New Year is an exciting time to do it as it’s a clean slate. Start the conversation by asking your child to set a resolution, through asking them what they want to accomplish this year. This could be to learn a new instrument, be more involved in household chores or try new foods, no matter what it is help them frame this is a goal.  


Make it a Family Activity 

Take a moment to reflect on the past year together. Begin by initiating a conversation about the New Year and what this means to each family member.  Encourage them to express their hopes and dreams for the coming year. Listen actively and guide them towards setting SMART goals that resonate with their passions and interests.  


Creating Achievable Goals  

Children thrive on simplicity and clarity. Opt for resolutions that are easy to understand and accomplish. Encourage them to choose goals related to their interests and abilities, such as learning a new word each week or practising tying their shoes. You can further encourage creativity by making a visual representation of their resolutions. Use drawings, pictures and words to illustrate your family goals. Display this artwork in a place where the family can see this daily, serving as a cheerful reminder of these aspirations.  


Maintaining Motivation  

Schedule regular family meetings to discuss progress and maintain motivation throughout the year. This provides an opportunity to offer support, make adjustments and celebrate achievements. Children also learn best through observations. Once your own resolutions are set share your progress with them, enabling them to understand the importance of personal growth and self-improvement. Remember, life is dynamic and circumstances often change. Encourage flexibility within your children’s resolutions. If a goal is no longer relevant, help them pivot towards something more appropriate.  


Types of Family New Year’s Resolutions  

  • Committing to do doing one act of kindness daily  
  • Starting to live in a more ecofriendly way  
  • Practising reframing negative thoughts  
  • Choosing a volunteering mission together  


Types of New Year’s Resolutions for Children 

  • Spend time reading each day  
  • Being kind to people  
  • Trying every food on the plate, even if it’s something new  
  • Brushing teeth twice a day 
  • Picking up toys at the end of the day or when they are done being used  


Whilst these may not seem like the typical resolutions we are used to making as adults, they are great habits that lead to positive behaviours. The earlier these are learnt, the better chance those good habits will stick.  


Setting New Year’s resolutions as a family is a powerful way to instil a sense of responsibility, teach vital life skills and strengthen the bonds that hold your family together.  

So, what the resolutions that your family are committing to in 2024?