Pragmatic Language SMART Goals
One type of goal that is particularly important for elementary school students is pragmatic language, which refers to the social use of language. Pragmatic goals help students develop the skills to communicate effectively in various social settings, including the classroom, playground, and home.
Here are 10 popular pragmatic goals for elementary school students:
Initiate and maintain a conversation with a peer for at least 3 minutes in a structured activity.
Take turns in conversation with a peer during a structured activity.
Use appropriate eye contact during a conversation with a peer.
Use appropriate body language during a conversation with a peer (e.g., facing the speaker, nodding to indicate understanding).
Use appropriate gestures during a conversation with a peer (e.g., pointing to objects, waving goodbye).
Use an appropriate tone of voice during a conversation with a peer (e.g., speaking loudly enough to be heard, using a friendly tone).
Use appropriate personal space during a conversation with a peer (e.g., standing a comfortable distance away, not invading the other person's space).
Use appropriate turn-taking during a conversation with a peer (e.g., allowing the other person to finish speaking or waiting for a pause before speaking).
Use appropriate topic maintenance during a conversation with a peer (e.g., staying on topic, and asking relevant questions).
Use appropriate conversational repair during a conversation with a peer (e.g., using phrases like "I'm sorry, I didn't understand" or "Can you repeat that?" to repair a breakdown in communication).
The best practice is for the goals to be specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. For example, goal 1 (initiating and maintaining a conversation) is specific (conversation with a peer), measurable (3 minutes in a structured activity), achievable (most students can hold a conversation for 3 minutes), relevant (improving pragmatic language skills), and time-bound (within a structured activity).
To help students achieve these goals, educators can provide a variety of structured activities that encourage conversation and practice social skills. For example, students could participate in group games or discussions, role-play scenarios, or cooperative learning activities. Educators can also provide feedback and support during these activities to help students improve their pragmatic language skills.
In addition to setting pragmatic language goals, educators can also focus on other areas of language development, such as vocabulary, grammar, and phonological awareness. By setting various language-related goals and providing targeted instruction, educators can help students improve their communication skills and succeed in school.