New Year's Resolutions for Teachers: The 30 Goals Challenge

A social media campaign wants to motivate teachers to make a fresh start in 2012.

New Year's doesn't mark the start of the school calendar for teachers, but that doesn't mean it isn't an opportunity for them to set new professional goals. But going at it alone can be tough. A new collaborative effort, The 30 Goals Challenge, invites educators to become part of a virtual community designed to help them change the way they view their classrooms and students.

Launched two years ago by influential educators Shelly Terrell and Lisa Dabbs, the grassroots effort has drawn 7,000 teacher participants from around the globe. The two founders set small, short-term goals designed to inspire teachers and help them improve their work incrementally. Last year, educators were challenged to make a list of "what you believe about learning," reflect on what an ideal classroom culture would look like, and set a goal to teach digital literacy.

Terrell and Dabbs—who founded two of the most popular education conversations on Twitter, #edchat and #ntchat (new teacher chat)—have long been advocates of the power of social media to connect educators and share best practices. They write posts on their websites about each goal and encourage participants to start their own blogs and do the same. Participants can also discuss the challenge on Twitter using the hashtag #30Goals, upload video reflections about each goal to YouTube, and post updates to the challenge's Facebook page. Although teachers are invited to join the challenge at any point, the formal kickoff will happen in early February.

Photo courtesy of The 30 Goals Challenge

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