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New Year’s Goals for Kids

Time to create some awesome goals for 2024!


Just like a fresh notebook waiting for its first scribble, a New Year beckons you with 365 untouched days. It’s a perfect chance for you to sketch your dreams, ambitions, and plans.

But how do you start? Don’t worry; we’ve got you covered. In this guide, we’ll show you how to set achievable New Year’s goals, pinpoint the good from the bad, and even get your parents on board.

It’s time to own 2024!

The Importance of Setting Goals For the New Year

You’ll find that setting goals for the New Year can significantly help you focus, make decisions, and feel accomplished. It’s like having a roadmap for the journey you’re about to embark on. You’ll know where you’re headed, what you need to do to get there, and you’ll be able to track your progress along the way.

Imagine you’re on a treasure hunt. Without a map or clues, you’d probably wander aimlessly, right? But with clear instructions, you’re likely to find that treasure faster and with less frustration. That’s what goals do for you. They give you direction and a sense of purpose.

Setting goals also gives you a sense of control over your life. You’re not just going with the flow; you’re steering your own ship. You’re making decisions that align with your goals, and that’s empowering.

Lastly, when you achieve your goals, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment. You’ve set out to do something, and you did it! That boosts your self-esteem and confidence. So, don’t shy away from setting goals this New Year. It’s a powerful tool that can help you grow and succeed.

Characteristics of Good Goals

When you’re setting your goals for the New Year, it’s essential to ensure they’re characterized by specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound (SMART) elements. This concept isn’t as complicated as it may seem, and it’s something you can master.

  1. Specific: When setting your goals, they need to be precise. Don’t just say ‘I want to do better in school,’ instead say, ‘I want to improve my math grade from a B to an A.’ This clarity will give you a clear direction.
  2. Measurable: Your goals should have concrete criteria for tracking progress. If your goal is to read more books, decide exactly how many books you want to read. That way, you’ll know when you’ve achieved your goal.
  3. Achievable: It’s important to set goals that are challenging, but still attainable. If you’ve never run before, setting a goal to win a marathon mightn’t be realistic. Instead, perhaps aim to run a mile without stopping.
  4. Relevant: Make sure your goals are relevant to your interests! Otherwise you might not be motivated to accomplish them.
  5. Time-Bound: Set a deadline for your goals so you keep yourself accountable.

Characteristics of Bad Goals

You’ve seen what good goals look like, but it’s equally important to know the characteristics of bad goals, so you can avoid setting them. Bad goals are typically vague, unrealistic, and not tied to a specific timeframe. They’re not measurable, so you can’t really track your progress.

For example, saying, ‘I want to read more books’ is a bad goal because it’s too vague. How many is ‘more’? Instead, make it specific: ‘I want to read one book every month.’ That’s a measurable goal you can track.

Unrealistic goals like ‘I will become a famous movie star this year’ set you up for disappointment. It’s great to dream big, but your goals should also be achievable.

Goals without a timeframe, like ‘I’ll learn to play the piano,’ lack urgency and can lead to procrastination. Add a deadline to give yourself a clear target to aim for.

Also, goals set because of peer pressure or because ‘everyone else is doing it’ are usually not meaningful to you, which can lead to a lack of motivation.

How to Set Goals for 2024

Now that you’re familiar with the characteristics of good and bad goals, let’s dive into how you can set your own goals for 2024. Remember, setting goals isn’t about making a long list of things you’d like to do. It’s about choosing a few important things that you’re really passionate about and then creating a plan to achieve them.

  1. Visualize Your Future: Start by imagining what you’d like your life to look like in 2024. Think about what makes you happy, what you’re good at, and what you want to learn or achieve.
  2. Make Your Goals SMART: This means your goals should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Don’t just say, ‘I want to be a better reader.’ Instead, say, ‘I will read 20 books by December 2024.’
  3. Create a Plan: Break down your goals into smaller steps. For example, if you want to read 20 books, figure out how many books you need to read each month. Then, schedule time each day for reading.

Setting goals for 2024 might seem like a big task, but you’ve got this! Take it one step at a time, and remember to celebrate your progress along the way.

Examples of Good Goals for 2024

Your friend’s goal might be to learn a new sport, and yours could be to improve your math skills. Each goal is unique, just like you. But what are some examples of good goals for 2024?

First, consider setting a goal related to your education. It could be improving in a subject you’re struggling with, like math or science. Or maybe you’d like to read more books outside of school. That’s a fantastic goal that’ll expand your knowledge and imagination.

Second, think about setting a goal related to your health and well-being. This might mean aiming to eat more fruits and vegetables, getting more sleep, or exercising regularly. These habits will help you feel physically strong and mentally sharp.

Finally, setting a goal related to personal growth is always a good idea. This could involve learning a new hobby, making new friends, or getting better at resolving conflicts. It’s about becoming the best version of yourself.

How Your Parents Can Help You Set Goals

Let’s dive in and see how your parents can pitch in to help you set and achieve your New Year’s goals. Your parents are a fantastic resource in this process and can help you in several ways.

  1. Guidance and Feedback: Your parents have a wealth of life experiences. They can provide valuable guidance and give constructive feedback on your goal-setting process. They may suggest tweaks that you hadn’t considered, making your goals more achievable.
  2. Support and Encouragement: Setting goals can be challenging, but remember, you’re not alone. Your parents are there to support and encourage you, cheering you on every step of the way. They’ll celebrate your victories with you and help you dust off your knees and try again if you stumble.
  3. Accountability: When you share your goals with your parents, it creates a sense of accountability. They’ll check in on your progress, ensuring you stay on track.


Setting New Year’s goals as a kid is like planting a tiny seed; with the proper care, it can grow into something amazing. Remember, a good goal is like a roadmap guiding you toward your dreams.

Avoid bad goals that are too vague or unrealistic. With your parents’ support and your determination, 2024 could be the year you start achieving those dreams.

So, get brainstorming, set those targets, and let’s make this year count!

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About the Author

David McCurrach

David McCurrach is the founder of Kids' Money. Following a career working in finance for several banks and credit unions, David started Kids' Money in 1995 and has since published three books on kids' financial literacy and allowance programs.

Last updated on: April 12, 2024