Students will learn how to anticipate obstacles to their smart goals and find possible solutions. When equipped with a plan on how to overcome any potential challenges, we are prepared and remain hopeful.
Teacher NotesStep by Step teaching guide
Pre questions1) How do you feel about hope so far? Is there anything you are worried about doing?
1) In order to keep ourselves hopeful (along with all of our hope tools), we have to approach life knowing that obstacles will arise. Obstacles are challenges we can overcome. Once we overcome them, we have more wisdom, tools, and the capacity to be hopeful.
2) When we set our goals or consider our passion and purpose, we also need to envision what might get in the way.
3) Let’s think about an example together. Sara wants to go to a good college.
What might be some challenges Sara faces in her plan to go to college?
Examples: She needs to get good grades, she needs to apply and be accepted, and she needs to find the money to pay for school.
By thinking ahead about the problems she might face, Sara can create solutions ahead of time for potential challenges.
What are some ways Sara can overcome the obstacles she might face when trying to get into a good college?
Examples: Asking for help from school counselors, practicing deep breathing when she feels overwhelmed, or having a fundraiser at her church.
4) With our own goals, we want to envision the obstacles that might come along so that we can also think about solutions to these obstacles. Then we are prepared for challenges. This preparation will keep us hopeful because we don’t feel defeated when obstacles arise. Instead, we are prepared to overcome them.
We are going to revisit Kendra’s story about the girl who set running goals.
Although we learned that Kendra eventually ran 10 miles in 8th grade, what we didn’t learn was that Kendra faced some obstacles to her goals that she had not planned for at first.
For example, part of Kendra’s plan was to join the group of middle school students who ran at the community center in her town. The center was three miles away. For the first few weeks, Kendra’s aunt took her to the center, but eventually, her aunt got busy and couldn’t always drive Kendra to the center.
Kendra knew that she had to keep up her running schedule in order to keep her lungs and legs strong. Not having a ride to the community center made it hard for Kendra to work toward her goals.
Kendra had a choice to make.
1. Stay home on Saturdays and feel sad or disappointed.
2. Find a way around this obstacle. Teacher Prompt: Instructor may pause here and ask students for ideas on how she could make it to the center.
Kendra asked everyone she knew for a ride to the center. This worked for a while, but eventually she was back to square one without a ride to her running group.
At that point, Kendra started walking to the center on Saturday mornings. Kendra was dedicated and was not going to let this obstacle interfere with her goal.
Through this experience, Kendra realized that for any goal she set, including her running goals for the future, obstacles were going to arise.
Learning how to overcome her obstacle of getting to the community center gave Kendra hope. It taught Kendra that she could be creative and resourceful and find ways around obstacles. It also taught her that we can keep moving toward our goals if we anticipate obstacles and figure out how to overcome them.
Obstacles are bound to cross our paths. No matter what is going on for you now, your past does not determine your future. You can use all of our hope tools, along with thinking ahead about obstacles and planning potential solutions, in order to create a successful life for yourself. Hope is fundamental to your happiness. By using these tools to anticipate and overcome obstacles, you can create hope for yourself.
“You may have to fight the battle more than once to win it.” Margaret Thatcher
May work with a partner
For the goal that you identified in the last lesson, brainstorm three potential obstacles you might face trying to achieve this goal. What are some pathways around that obstacle? Write these obstacles and pathways on your hope sunflower.
Additional Teaching Tools for Lesson 8
*The following list of stories and activities are recommended to enhance student learning, experience, and to encourage and promote further discussions related to each lesson’s content. Please choose what fits best for you, your students, and classroom environment. You may locate the resources listed below from the Chicken Soup for the Soul in the Classroom.
p. 87 Just Ben
p. 90 The Power of Determination
p. 253 Abraham Lincoln Didn’t Quit
Hopeful Minds, an iFred.org project, was made possible through the generous support of The Mood Factory and Sutter Health.