Self-monitor is one of the brain’s behavioral executive functions, and it describes the ability to view and evaluate oneself in a situation. Students with the skill of self-monitor can judge their efforts and adjust what they are doing when given feedback or cues. They are able to check their work for errors, correct mistakes, and do their best to keep their work neat.
Students who have not yet developed self-monitor skills struggle to understand that their actions can be bothersome to others. They often leave their work incomplete, and their submitted work is typically sloppy in appearance, with poor handwriting and multiple mistakes. Students who struggle to monitor themselves have difficulty understanding their strengths and areas of needed improvement.
Goals to work towards for self-monitor development may include:
- Understand strengths and areas for growth
- Make sure work is neat and complete
- Be aware of how actions and words affect others
When working towards goals for self-monitor, it is essential to teach students techniques to view and evaluate themselves. Strategies for self-monitor growth include providing guided, constructive feedback to increase self-awareness; allowing frequent opportunities throughout learning sessions to self-reflect; and tracking self-monitor progress by keeping daily logs to record growth.
Self-monitor skills profoundly impact a student’s ability to learn and succeed, and providing students with the strategies to practice self-monitoring will have long-lasting benefits.