As you may have known from my post at the start of 2020, I believe in New Year's goals, not New Year's resolutions. (To learn the difference, check out that post). As I'm thinking about 2021 goals, I have been reflecting on the crazy, unexpected year that was 2020. These thoughts apply both to our site and to life in general.
Dysgraphia Life had lofty goals in 2020. But just like most people, there were huge curveballs thrown our way. Health and safety concerns, economic issues, children at home distance-learning affecting the adults' ability to work effectively -- everyone faced quite a challenging year. We pushed through the best we could. The outcome was a series of small victories, that slowly added up. More content, resources, science, success stories, and partnerships -- at the end of the day, we actually made progress towards all of our goals.
These small victories make me think about our community and the challenges that everyone faces every day. The little things can really add up in life too. One parent I know had an impactful conversation with a new 4th grade teacher coming into her child's class after a maternity-leave transition. She explained the writing difficulties that her child faced and the stress and tears about writing assignments. Together, the parent and teacher reviewed the upcoming assignments. While writing for a language arts assignment was deemed essential, there was a large "digital citizenship" assignment that required written responses to 3 questions after each of 10 chapters of material. A combined 30 written answers.
When asked, the teacher confirmed that the point of this assignment was to ensure that the child knew the content, NOT to assess writing skills. So they discussed alternate options. Together, they agreed that instead of uploading written answers, the child could upload a video of himself answering the questions verbally. This solution made all the difference.
The child, who had been procrastinating and hadn't started the large assignment, was thrilled to not have to write. He immediately began working on it. The parent didn't have to fight with the child to do it - there were no tears at all! The child's self-esteem about completing the assignment was high and he applied himself and learned the content, which is what the teacher really wanted. It was a win all the way around. All three agreed that they should use this method more in the future.
One conversation. One simple solution. A small victory that improved everyone's outcome.
There are still a lot of challenges that lie ahead in 2021. There is hope on the horizon of getting 'back to normal' but it won't be immediate. So, as we think about our goals for 2021, we are asking the question, "What small victories would help us achieve our big-picture goals?" We encourage you to think about this in your or your child's lives too. Is there a simple resource you could use that would help move things forward? Is there one small accomplishment to focus on first that would be an impactful and encouraging victory? Is there a conversation that you could have or one accommodation you could utilize that would make an important difference?
As always, we would love to hear what you come up with. Comment below or in our Facebook community or send us an email. Let us know what you are aiming to accomplish in 2021 and if there are any ways that we can be of help.
Wishing everyone all the best in 2021,