The CRT Blog

Your New Year’s Lesson Plan – All Ready to Go!

Isn’t Christmas break THE BEST? Faith, family, food, fun, free time…

I don’t know about you, but at some point during Christmas break feelings of dread usually begin to bubble up within me. The giant list of All the Things I Should Be Doing to Get Ready for Going Back to School starts to overwhelm me until I’m feeling like this:

I don’t want you to feel this way coming into the new year. You deserve to ease back into things and continue experiencing peace of mind and heart (and so do your students!).

I BELIEVE I CAN HELP.

I have an assignment that is perfect for after Christmas break! Here are just 4 quick reasons you’ll love it:

  1. You won’t have to do anything (relax and keep enjoying your Christmas break – your lesson plans are already done!) 🤩
  2. It lines up beautifully with the New Year (it takes the idea of New Year’s resolutions to a HOLY new level!) 😉 😇
  3. Your students will actually enjoy working on it (it’s a 100% self-focused assignment, which means guaranteed interest AND buy-in!) 🥰
  4. It could completely change your students’ lives (SERIOUSLY!) 🤯

The assignment is called Plan to Be a Saint!

Here’s the fun background story on this assignment:

A number of years ago a saintly friend and mentor of mine, Dan Moran (you can check out his amazing testimony HERE), asked me if I had a personal mission statement. I didn’t, so Dan promptly challenged me to take some time to thoughtfully and prayerfully come up with one.

I have to admit that I avoided Dan’s challenge for a few months. I had a number of excuses (“I don’t have the time…”, “Aren’t mission statements just for businesses?”, “This just seems silly…”, etc.), but (thanks to the Holy Spirit and Dan’s challenge echoing in my head!) I eventually gave it a shot.

After some quality prayer and reflection time I came up with a personal mission statement. Then I added some “I” statements, a number of short and long-term goals, and even a list of heroes I wanted to emulate.

It was an immediate GAME-CHANGER.

I found new direction, purpose, and enthusiasm for the call to holiness that God has for me. And not only did I have a better idea of who I was and where I wanted to go, but I now had a plan for how to get there!

(Dan and I celebrating)

I was so excited about this personal game-changer that I (you guessed it!) assigned Dan’s challenge to all of my students. 😃

Not completely surprising to me, but my students both a) Thoroughly enjoyed the assignment and b) Really grew because of it.

And oh my goodness, the day that everyone shared their mission statements, goals, etc. in class… A-MAZ-ING!!!!! So inspiring for everyone in the room… 🙌

And so, if you want to help your students have the best (happiest and holiest!) year ahead, I’d highly encourage you to check out this assignment. It asks students to:

  • Come up with a personal mission statement that defines who you are and how you will live
  • Create a list of positive “I” statements which describe you as if you were already the best version of yourself
  • Set short and long-term S.M.A.R.T. goals that can help motivate you and lead you in the direction of being who God is calling you to be
  • Think of 3 heroes (on earth or in Heaven) that possess qualities or characteristics that you would like to imitate in your own life

Stories and examples (along with 9 pages of extremely detailed, step-by-step notes on exactly what to do and say throughout this multiple-day lesson!) will help you teach and explain the grand scope of this assignment. You can use it in connection with New Year’s resolutions, the season of Lent, the close of a school year, lessons on Jesus/the saints/discipleship, or basically any time you want your students to reflect on their lives and do something that will draw them closer to God and the saints He’s calling them to be.

Here is what one rockstar teacher had to say about it:

“I bought this resource to use at the beginning of January when my 7th & 8th graders return from Christmas break and it is a game changer. It helps them develop the lifelong skill of a mission statement. It is better than New Years’ Resolutions in that they determine a mission statement after looking through some provided examples, and then brainstorm ways to live out their mission statement. They set goals and identify heroes (either personal or saints) that they can emulate. It provides great opportunities for self-reflection. Love this resource!!”

– Shelly Conlon

So, if you’d like to kick back and continue enjoying the peace of Christmas (no lesson plans to work on – I’ve got you covered!) and help your students start the New Year off in a fun and life-changing way (woohoo!), check out Plan to Be a Saint!

Here’s to a happy, healthy, and holy 2021!

In Christ,
Greg

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