#30GoalsEdu: Send a Future Message

The future is always a promise; a promise for a brighter, more enjoyable version of life or for the moment we will be able to live our dreams. It’s inextricably tied to the present though. As Shakespeare wrote, “It’s not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves”. Our present actions/decisions determine what our future will look like and build the way towards it. Talking about the future and our expectations of it is an essential part of my lessons, especially my first back-to-school ones. Since the future might be intimidating, I want my students to feel that by setting small goals they can accomplish their bigger dreams and that anything is possible provided they work towards it.

Here are some of the future message activities I work on with my classes:

  • Something I do with younger students is to ask them to write a “gift letter” to themselves which they will get to open after Christmas or at the end of the year. I think it gives them a clearer perspective of what they can do withing smaller periods of time. 
  • Another activity we often work on is creating our own time capsules with present moments we would like to save for the future or letters we want to open at the end of the year or later.I’ve also found lots of creative writing/project making worksheets on makebeliefscomix.com.
One of our time capsules

One of the many amazing worksheets you can find here, on makebeliefscomix

  • We write letters to next year students where we talk about how we hope to overcome the stuggles/problems of this year and give advice to future students. 
  • We create “Cheer me up” walls with post-it notes with notes students write to encourage and motivate their future selves when they face problems/difficulties. 
  • We also use time-machine games to revise or consolidate what we’ve learned throughout the year. For more on one of these games, read an earlier post on my blog here
Writing a letter to my future self though was something I hadn’t done for many years. And believe me it wasn’t easy – yourself is the last person you want to disappoint when you read the letter in the future. I’ve sent my letter through the emailfuture.com site Shelly suggested because it was so easy to use. I expect to receive my letter on this day next year. Hopefully, I will have accomplished all my goals! Here is my letter:

Dear Maria,

Another school year just went by and what a blast you had! You welcomed new and older students and made sure your lessons had that special something that would spark your kids’ imagination and curiosity. You had ups and downs, but I’m sure you’ve kept the promise you gave to yourself – to never give up!

I hope that by now you’ve managed to stick to a healthier lifestyle and started exercising more. Also, you promised you would continue to share love and kindness unconditionally – hope you’ve been true to your words!

You had so many plans professionally. I’m sure you’ve achieved most of them, what I’m most concerned about though is whether you managed your time effectively. It’s a constant struggle for you since you always run around working, writing or thinking of this and that.

Music was a huge part of your life (as always), but I know this year you met inspiring musicians, played lots of gigs and wrote more music. There are many greater singing moments ahead and I know you’re ready to embrace new musical experiences and challenges.

All in all, I hope your year was a great one. Even if you didn’t manage to do everything, that’s all right. Give yourself a pat on the shoulder and move on. And always remember I’m here for you as so many other people are.

Love,

Maria

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5 Comments

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  1. Excellent ideas, Maria! Writing a letter to your future self seems like the perfect way to “dive” into the new school year!

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  2. Thanks so much, Mireille! I'm also thinking of asking my younger ones to write a “goodbye” letter to their summer-self along with a “welcome” letter to autumn and school!

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  3. Great one as well ! I have to say I love your blog; so insightful and inspirational . Great job! Does your blog have a Facebook page?I couldn't see it, or maybe I just missed it because I'm mostly mobile …

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  4. Thanks once again for your kind words and support, Mireille! My blog doesn't have a FB page yet, but thanks for reminding me that I should create one 🙂

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  5. Reblogged this on ELT Rants, Reviews, and Reflections and commented:
    It is my great pleasure to reblog and share this post from Maria MariaTheologidou (aka @MariaTheo1) a new Worpress Convertee. She has lots of interesting posts on her blog and a few others I’d recommend are:

    https://mariatheologidou.wordpress.com/2014/07/11/bye-bye-bad-habits-a-lesson-on-self-improvement/

    https://mariatheologidou.wordpress.com/2015/09/05/30goalsedu-share-your-edtech-success-story/

    I also recommend checking out her fantastic singing (in this case with Fluency MC: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lhFNk-xssC8

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