At the beginning of the Goal Mountain session I explain to students we are going to make a mountain representing our goals and the positive "steps" we can take to reach our goals. As a group we brainstorm some ideas of what types of goals we might have. Students usually suggest future goals, career goals, interpersonal goals and school goals.
After we talk about some potential goal ideas, I instruct students to think of a goal they would like to work towards. I give each student a cloud to record their goal. I instruct students to use colored pencils, markers, or construction paper crayons to record their goal on their cloud. Some examples of students' goals include, "to go to college," "stay in school," "get along with my brothers and sisters more," and "get better grades."
After the clouds are finished, we begin working on the positive "steps" we can take to reach our goals. I ask them to brainstorm positive "steps" they could take to reach their goal. Once students come up with "steps," I instruct them to trace their feet on a 12"x 18"piece of construction paper and cut them out. Students then record the positive "steps" on their feet using colored pencils, markers, or construction paper crayons. For example, if the goal is "get better grades" positive "steps" would be to "ask the teacher for help," "study," "use a planner to record homework," etc. Students can write multiple "steps" on each foot or they can record one "step" per foot.
After everyone is finished, we share our goals with the group. We then pick spots on the Goal Mountain where we want our feet to go. I then tape all of the clouds and feet to the mountain.
To make my Goal Mountain, I ripped pieces of purple roll paper to make a mountain shape. I then used a white piece of construction paper to make the snowy tip. I used stick on fabric letters I found on clearance at Michael's Arts and Crafts store and construction paper to make the "Goal Mountain" title.
The Goal Mountain pictured is the actual Goal Mountain I am using in my current group. I edited the picture so that student goals and "steps" are not visible. I have our Goal Mountain displayed on my window.
Students really enjoy this activity. It is a fun and positive way to talk about goals and the steps we need to take to reach them. Goal Mountain could be used for a variety of different groups. I currently use Goal Mountain in my groups with children who have an incarcerated parent or loved one.
What activities do you facilitate related to goals? Do you have a favorite visual group activity?Comment below, email me, tweet, or share on the School Counselor Blog Facebook Page!
Danielle is a K-12 Certified School Counselor, Nationally Certified Counselor, and blogger at School Counselor Blog, a place where school counselors share innovative ideas, creative lesson plans, and quality resources. Contact Danielle via email, follow her on twitter, and become a fan of the School Counselor Blog Facebook Page.